So you want to know how to make your ebike go faster?
Well you’re in luck today! I’m going to teach you exactly how to make your ebike go faster!
There’s a few ways you can do it.
Firstly the expensive route, by replacing your motor, controller, or battery. Or a combination of the three.
Then we have the display “hack” which is free – woohoo!
So if you’re wanting some extra speed, read on my friend!
Replacing Your Motor, Battery or Controller
The first choice in our how to make your ebike go faster guide is to replace your motor, battery or controller.
What you need to replace will depend on your setup.
If you’ve bought your ebike you’re probably out of luck for this method.
Commercial ebikes are made with components that are suited for each other and aren’t intended to be upgraded.
Carry on to the display speed hack method for you pre-built bike buddies!
If you built your ebike however, you’re in luck because you can swap out and change components at will!
Keep in mind that pumping more juice through your components will also mean more wear on your entire drive system.
In the event of a mid-drive ebike, you’re going to be putting more stress on the chain and gears.
Plan for more maintenance!
Firstly let us take a look at your motor.
The motor is the actual driving for for your ebike.
This is the big windings of metal and magic* that drive the ebike!
*Magic may or may not be a part of your ebike. Please contact your nearest Hogwarts to see if magic is involved!
Most ebike motors have a wattage rating. This is ambiguous.
The wattage rating may refer to peak or nominal wattage.
Peak wattage is the maximum that the motor will be able to handle for short periods of time.
Nominal wattage is the average wattage that the motor can handle without any bad things happening (e.g. Melting, exploding, all that good stuff!)
Some manufacturers will incorrectly list their motors using their peak wattage. This is somewhat misleading because while they can output that amount of watts, it’s only for a very short burst.
Often the short burst is when you’re accelerating or you punch the throttle.
You will need to find the nominal wattage for your ebike motor to ensure it can handle an upgraded amount of power.
Searching the web for your ebike motor should provide you with technical specifications from the manufacturer.
So search around for the nominal wattage of your ebike motor, and we can continue!
How much you up the power on your motor depends of how far you’re willing to push it.
A badly engineered, small wattage motor probably won’t handle much more power. A small 250W motor probably won’t handle much more.
But something like the Bafang BBSHD can handle a lot more power due to it’s intense engineering!
It’s 1000W nominal and can really handle a beating!
So if you have a decent motor then read on to find out how to make your ebike go faster!
But if you don’t think your little motor has it in it, then you’d be best to upgrade it to a larger one (if possible).
You’ll find that most hub drives tend to be unable to give any more speed due to their design.
Mid-drives however allow you to pump more through them, and since you can change gears you can allow the motor to spin differently.
This allows more speed and torque to be delivered by the mid drive.
If you’re just pumping more amps into your motor (which is fine for pretty much any motor) then you need to think about heat dissipation.
Pumping more amps through your motor will generate more heat. You need to dissipate this heat so you don’t melt the motor!
Often you can double the amps with active cooling, like using a fan to cool the motor.
Drilling holes in a hub motor is a good way to get more cooling. But this can also allow dust, grime and water inside the motor.
Ahh, the good old battery!
This is the first stop on our whirlwind tour of making your ebike go faster!
Batteries are the quickest and easiest way to increase speed with minimal effort. And they’re really the most important part of going faster.
You can have the best motor and controller in the world, but match it with a low volt, low amp battery and you’re out of luck.
If you’re not sure about the terminology of ebike batteries, don’t fret, I have you covered!
So we should know that increasing amps gives us more acceleration.
And volts give us more speed!
Use the previous two sentences to decide on what kind of battery you should get.
You also need to ensure that your motor controller can handle the volts that you’re trying to force it to eat.
Volts are the important variable that you must get right – otherwise you can blow up your controller.
Not a fun day!
If your controller can only handle 48v or 52v don’t give it a battery with more than 48v or 52v respectively.
Amps are fine – your controller will only draw the amps that it needs so you can have a battery with lots of amps and it will be fine.
Increasing the amps will generally give you more capacity (and volts also do this, but to a lesser extent).
The important part about amps is ensuring that your battery has a maximum amp draw that is higher than what the controller will draw at peak.
So grab yourself a battery with more volts (if your controller can handle it) with more amps (for range), and enough maximum amp draw.
Then you’ll find your ebike goes faster.
Unless you kill your motor, then you won’t really go anywhere. Damn.
Turns out your motor is capable of handling a lot more. Maybe you’ve also gotten a new battery and still not happy.
The last thing you can do is to change out your controller.
The controller is the piece of electronics that takes the power from the battery and allows it to go to the motor for speed!
Everything connects to the controller. Just having a motor and a battery isn’t going to be much good.
Something needs to have brains in this equation!
The controller takes input from your pedalling, the battery, throttle, pedal assist levels and information from a display maybe.
This is all hashed together by a series of smart components that deliver power to your motor.
A really good controller will have robust components, allowing it to handle lots of amps.
Good components also cost more money. So a great controller will be fairly expensive.
Your controller needs to also match the voltage of your battery (or at least have an operating range that accepts your voltage).
Your controller will have a max amp draw that may or may not be programmable.
The battery should also have a peak amp draw above that of the max amps through the controller for best performance.
There’s some really crazy controllers out there like LunaCycle’s 60 Amp controller.
That controller will handle any battery from 36v – 72v, and a maximum amp draw of 60 amps.
Running that controller with a 72V, 60 amp battery will allow you to push through 4,320 watts to your motor.
If you have sufficient cooling, and a strong enough motor. And maybe strong enough chains, gears, tires and all the rest. Then you’ll have one hell of a crazy hot-rodded machine.
Combining All Three Tells Us How To Make Your Ebike Go Faster
You need to consider all three components when deciding to upgrade your built ebike.
A beefier motor, more capable battery and a robust controller are all essential when increasing your ebike speed.
However, when deciding on your components keep in mind what your preferences are.
It’s very difficult to get speed, cheap, reliable and light components.
You’ll be able to get speed, reliability and light components but at a steep cost.
Or you could get speed, cheap components, possibly medium weight but these will be likely unreliable.
If you decide your preferences for your ebike before you grab new components, you can choose parts easier and find the best compromises for your situation.
Next up in our article is the quick and easy speed hack for prebuilt, and even homebuilt ebikes.
Display Speed Hack
Lots of commercially built bikes will come with cheap components.
This is why you’re generally unable to upgrade a single component and have a decent increase in speed.
Also many commercial bikes come with their motor welded into the frame making them near impossible to upgrade.
Your best bet is to try and sell your bike and build your own, following the advice above to maximise speed.
However a cool trick can be done for ebikes that are electronically limited to say 25kmh (16mph), as is common in many European countries.
Most prebuilt ebikes will be able to go a bit faster than they are limited to, without any issues.
This is where the display speed hack comes in handy.
A Crash Course On Wheel Size
Almost every display for an ebike will allow you to change the wheel size parameter.
This is to provide accurate readings for the speed you’re going.
Let’s quickly go over how wheel size affects speed.
For a given RPM (say 60RPM), a wheel that is larger will be going faster, than a smaller wheel.
So if we were to tell the ebike that our wheels are smaller than they actually are, it will think we’re travelling slower than we actually are.
Awesome, So How Do We Go Faster Then?
If our ebike is electronically limited to 25kmh (16mph), we’re able to go faster than that with motor assistance because it thinks we’re going slower.
If your ebike shows kmh and your ebike wheels are 26″, you can change the ebike settings to say you have 18″ wheels.
The result of this is that we have our ebike “kmh” actually showing mph. We are also able to travel faster than the electronically limited speed!
We get a nearly accurate speed reading and we go faster than we’re allowed to!
A free win for all you speed freak ebike junkies (like myself!)
If you’re not running 26″ wheels though, you might have difficulty finding the correct size on your ebike settings to read an accurate speed. But if that doesn’t bother you, then you can still go faster than the electronic limit anyway!
How To Make Your Ebike Go Faster: What’s The Best Way?
So how to make your ebike go faster?
The best way I recommend is; It depends.
If you have a prebuilt ebike, do the display hack on your bike. If that still isn’t fast enough, you should really sell your ebike. Either upgrade it to a faster (much more expensive) prebuilt ebike. Or you can build your own ebike, for a lot cheaper!
If you have built your own ebike, often times you can set the display to have unlimited assistance anyway.
If you can’t, just do the speed hack firstly – again if it isn’t enough speed for you, feel free to upgrade the components in your ebike where you feel like it’s lacking.
Often times this will be all 3 components if you skimped out on them while building it. Or maybe you just couldn’t afford that better battery at the time.
No worries – you can always go back again and again to upgrade your components.
At the end of the day, the important thing is that it’s fast enough for you, and within your budget or skills.
Feel free to drop me a line for some one-on-one help or leave a comment below!
Happy riding you speed junkies!