geared hub motor vs direct drive hub motor

E-bike Geared Hub Motors vs Direct Drive Hub Motors

How much do you know about electric bicycle motors? Which type of electric bicycle motor should I choose? Geared hub motor or direct drive (gearless) hub motor? You may have many questions about this. At present, the main types of motors on the market are the two we just mentioned. If you guys have read our product introductions carefully, you will find that the current three models of electric bicycles under Himiway are all equipped with geared hub motors. Want to know why we made such a choice? Let us find out the answers together!


First of all, in order to give you a clearer understanding of electric bicycle motors, we would like to briefly introduce the working principles of these two different types of motors.


Geared Hub Motors

The geared hub motor and the stator are connected through a gear reduction system. Each time its case rotates, the internal gear rotates many times at a faster speed. This allows the motor to work at a faster and more efficient speed, while also allowing the wheels to spin at a relatively low speed.


Direct Drive Hub Motors

As for the direct drive hub motor, also called gearless hub motor. Compared with the geared hub motor, its stator combination is more complicated, consisting of the axle of the motor itself and the copper winding fixed on the axle. The outer shell of the hub motor is equipped with magnets, when the stator is energized, an induced magnetic field will be generated to cause the magnet to move, and the magnet will turn the entire shell of the motor, thereby driving the bicycle to move forward.

hub geared motor on himiway


Difference between Geared Hub & Direct Drive Hub

Then you might wonder what is the difference between them? Well, next we will explain their respective advantages and disadvantages in detail from their weight, speed, range, etc.


  • Weight & Size

It is obvious that due to the more complex structure of the stator, the weight of the gearless hub motor will be heavier and the volume will be larger, which will make the whole bicycle bulkier. On the contrary, the lightweight of the geared hub motor will make your bicycle easier to carry and make your cycling trip more enjoyable.


  • Speed

Normally, the maximum speed of a gearless hub motor is faster than that of a geared hub motor. This is because the rotor speed of the geared hub motor is relatively fast, and a gear reduction system is needed to reduce the speed and then drive the wheels to rotate. However, geared hub motor electric bicycles can meet the needs of most people in their daily use. For example, Himiway Cruiser and Himiway Cruiser Step-Thru are both equipped with Shimano 7-speed transmission system, with 7 different speed gears, which can satisfy the demands of most customers. Besides, because the gear hub motor can generate more torque at a lower speed, you will save more effort when starting the bike and going uphills or muddy roads compared to riding an electric bicycle with a gearless hub motor.


  • Range

As for battery life, geared hub motors can produce more energy with less electricity, so battery consumption is also reduced. And correspondingly, the battery life is longer and the riding range is wider. Let's take Himiway E-bike as an example. Our Cruiser series of electric bicycles are equipped with 48V,  17.5A Samsung/LG lithium batteries. After fully charged, when using pedal-assisted cycling mode, the maximum range of a single ride can reach 60 miles, which can meet the commuting needs of most people, or go back and forth in the county. You can ride it for visiting friends or have a vacation, just indulge in a wonderful cycling trip.


  • Noise

Because the geared hub is driven by the gear reduction system to rotate the wheels, there may be some noise when it is working. The gearless hub hardly makes any noise. This is where the advantage of gearless hub motors lies.


  • Durability

Geared hub motors are driven by many small gears. After a long time, these small objects will be worn and cause motor failure, while gearless hub motors are not so easy to damage. However, because the pedal drive system of the hub motor is completely independent, there is no need to worry about motor failure. Even if any of the two is out of order, it will not make you despair. You can choose to use the pedal when the hub motor fails, and use the purely electric mode when the chain is broken. In any case, there is a double guarantee for your ride. Moreover, Himiway provides a two-year warranty. If there is any problem with your electric bike, please just feel free to contact our customer service team. We will always be willing to solve your problem.


How to Choose E-bike Motors?

After you have a general understanding of the different types of motors and their respective characteristics, now we will answer your most concerning questions: How to Choose E-bike Motors? We recommend making your choice carefully according to your own requirements. If you want to use your electric bicycle for commuting or riding on some small hills, the geared hub motor will not let you down. Because it is not only light and easy to carry, but also has a considerable range of battery life and low maintenance costs. And if you want to use it for conquering some rugged mountain roads or do some challenging cycling exercise, the gearless hub motor will be more of your flavor and we believe you will have more joy with gearless hub motors. Therefore, the choice is all up to you. Therefore, Therefore, all we can do is to give you some sincere suggestions, the choice is yours.


Now, do you guys have a clearer understanding of the difference between a geared hub motor and a gearless hub motor? Which one do you prefer? The former type that is light, labor-saving, and has a longer range, or the latter one that is faster and has no noise? If you want to spread the knowledge about electric bicycles to more people, you can just share Himiway's blog with your friends!