Note many people ask this question – the answer is … it depends. If you need a bike that you are going to throw around a bit while riding more demanding trails then you should be looking at a mid motor bike. A mid motor will give you better balance control as the weight of the motor is low and in the middle of the bike. If however you are just going to ride on roads and light trails then a hub motor could suit as there is no noticeable difference in the weight distribution for this type of riding. Also, the cost is generally substantially lower for a hub motor.
Note that most hub motor e-bikes in NZ do not have torque sensing and instead have a (much cheaper) sensing system to detect movement of the pedals. This type of sensor is called a speed, or cadence sensor. The issue with speed sensors is that they are slow to react – taking half to a full revolution of the pedal before the motor kicks in. They are also slow to switch the motor off, which can be a safety issue. They also cannot control how much power is being applied from the motor and simply apply full power (depending on the level of PAS selected) every time the sensor is activated.
All Bionic hub drive ebike have SensorDrive technology controlling the motor operation. A light press on the pedal initiates a light level of motor power, while a heavy press initiates much higher power levels. The result is a much smoother, more natural feel when you a cycling. SensorDrive is also more economical on battery consumption, generally delivering between 5-10% better range than speed sensor systems.