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“Geared or Direct Drive motor? Which one do you recommend for my bike?”

This is the question we get asked at least once a day.

It’s probably one of the questions which is not easy to answer because it totally depends on your needs and expectations. You should start answering the following questions:

Do you want more range or higher speed?

Less drag or longer motor life expectancy?

Do you need more torque, lighter motor that you can pedal easily when you are out of power?

Or do you want a powerful and quieter bicycle over 1000 watts?

Geared or Direct Drive?

Let us try to show you the difference between these two motors without diving deep into technical details.

Direct Drive (Gearless) Motors are silent, faster and more durable but they have less torque. They are heavier than geared motors and the drag they have makes pedaling more difficult. (The magnets inside of the direct drive motor creates a drag as the motor spins and you will notice drag when cycling if there is no power). Also the range of direct drive motors on a single charge is a little less.

Geared Motors are light, small and offer more range on a full charge. They have almost no drag when pedaling. The ring gears in the motor tend to make a slightly noticeable noise. Also, geared motors offer a considerable lower top speed. They output more torque and it will help riders to climb hills easily and accelerate quickly but the main disadvantage of geared motors are that the ring gears can potentially wear out over time, as they are plastic. 

Direct Drive Motors Geared Motors
  • Durable
  • Faster
  • Quiter
  • Almost no drag
  • Smaller size
  • Lighter motor
  • More Torque
  • Drag while pedaling
    Less range on single charges
  • Larger size
  • Heavier
  • Have noise
  • Lower speed


In conclusion, both motor types have pros and cons. If you are looking for a powerful ebike conversion kit, a direct drive motor would be the best option. If you are in need for more torque, more range and a lighter motor which can be easily pedaled even without a battery, then choose a geared motor.

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