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Hub motor vs Mid-motor

Hub motor vs Mid-motor

Every electric bicycle has a motor to provide power. Most electric bikes have a hub motor or a mid-drive motor. What is the difference between a hub motor and a mid-drive motor?


What is the difference between a hub motor and a mid-drive motor?


Hub Motor: 

As the name suggests, the hub motor integrates the motor into the hub. After the engine is energized, it converts electrical energy into mechanical energy, driving the wheels to rotate and driving the electric bicycle to move forward. The hub motor has a mature design and low price and is widely used in electric bikes.




There are two types of hub motors: geared hub motors and gearless hub motors.

Geared hub motors have planetary gears, which reduce the RPM of the engine to a much lower speed to drive the wheels.




The gearless hub motor has a traditional internal structure and does not have a double planetary reduction device. It directly relies on electromagnetic conversion to generate mechanical energy to drive the electric bicycle.



Advantages and disadvantages of hub motors


  1. Simple structure and affordable price.
  2. The hub motor is easy to install by yourself.
  3. Using the hub motor, you can easily convert almost any bicycle to an electric bike.
  4. If the hub motor is burned out or worn out, it is easy to replace.
  5. The hub motor is easy to upgrade, and the old ones can be resold.
  6. The structure is simple. Under the action of the current, a magnetic field is formed between the two magnetic steel sheets to make the rotating shaft move. Due to the simple structure, the failure rate is reduced.


  1. The hub motor is the unsprung weight of the wheel.
  2. The direct-drive hub motor has resistance when there is no power, making the bicycle feel dull when pedaling.
  3. In-wheel motors are not as efficient as non-in-wheel motors.
  4. The hub motor may be heavy.
  5. In-wheel motors make it more challenging to replace flat tires.
  6. The hub motor will disrupt the forward or backward balance of the bicycle.


Mid-drive motor:

The central drive motor is located in the middle of the bicycle, between the pedals of the bottom bracket of the bike, and is designed to drive the crank or pedals and transmit the motor's power to the rear wheels through a chain drive.



Advantages and disadvantages of mid-drive motors


  1. Large torque, quick start, provide the best performance
  2. The central location provides the best weight distribution
  3. The mid-drive motor can be variable speed, with good controllability, fast acceleration, and strong climbing ability
  4. The central motor has high power and good heat dissipation.
  5. Due to the transmission of power through the chain, the power of the motor is doubled, resulting in better output than expected


  1. The price is higher
  2. The central position increases the pressure on the chain, so it needs to be replaced frequently
  3. High maintenance cost
  4. A broken chain will make the bicycle unable to drive
  5. It is noisier than the hub motor



Choose a suitable motor.

It depends on the situation! Both systems have their advantages and disadvantages. The final answer may depend on the type of electric bicycle you use. We believe that geared hub motors are the most suitable for casual urban riders because it requires less maintenance and provides a more reliable system. Some applications need to lean towards mid-drive engines. Still, unless you are a group of riders riding technical monorails and steep climbs, geared hub motors' reliability and maintenance-free features are your best choice.


Esoulbike is equipped with different motors according to other models and needs. Geared hub motors, gearless hub motors, and mid-drive motors are available. Come and choose a kit according to your needs to make your bike more dynamic!

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