After the meteoric rise in the popularity of e-bikes, the UK and EU enacted new legislation to limit the power and features commuter e-bikes can possess to keep them safe. However, with the EU being comprised of so many countries, regulations can be confusing to those eager to buy an e-bike while staying on the right side of the law. In this guide, we’ll clear the air on ebike regulation and tell you why using an ebike is the best option for your daily commute.
E-bike (Electrically Assisted Pedal Cycle) Law
The UK passed a law back in 1982 called the Electrically Assisted Pedal Cycle regulations (or EAPC for short). This law set the standard for legal e-bike sales in the UK up until 2015 when the country decided to mirror the EU e-bike standard known as EN15194.
According to EU regulation EN15194, an e-bike (or pedelec) is defined by having pedals to move the bike and a motor to assist with pedalling up to a maximum speed of 15.5 mph (or 25.5 km/h). After this limit, the motor will automatically cut-off and stop assisting to reduce speed. Of course, you can still go as fast as your legs can move; however, the motor won’t help you after the cut-off.
EN15194 also banned full-throttles (also known as twist-and-go throttle) from e-bikes. This throttle is a switch that allows the motor to propel the bike without any pedalling involved. The law only allows a full-throttle (without pedalling) of up to 3.7 mph (6 km/h) for a starting-assist, but after that, you’ll need to start turning the pedals to activate the motor.
As mentioned, the UK EAPC follows the EU EN15194 law almost precisely, but there are a few differences. In the UK, e-bikes can’t be ridden by anyone younger than 14 years old. Also, since full-throttle (or twist-and-go) was ubiquitous before the 2015 , any bike with a full-throttle made before 2016 is still legal.
As long as an e-bike remains within these guidelines, they won’t need any license, registration, or vehicle tax requirement.
UK - Motor Maximum 250W. Age Requirement -14 years old. Electric Motor Assistance Top Speed: 15.5 mph (25.5 km/h). Throttle Top Speed (Without Pedalling) -3.7 mph (6 km/h) Except those made before January 1st, 2016.
EU - Motor Maximum 250W. Age Requirement – no age limit. Electric Motor Assistance Top Speed: 15.5 mph (25.5 km/h). Throttle Top Speed (Without Pedaling) -3.7 mph (6 km/h)
Just to clarify State Physical E-bike meets these requirements and if you decide to get one, you wont need any licence , registration or tax.
Electric Bicycle Benefits
Benefits of riding light commuter ebike are clear and straight forward. For starters, riding one makes your commute a breeze as you glide along the roads and easily surmount hills. With the extra assistance given by the motor with commuter ebike, you’ll never arrive at work exhausted or desperately in need of a shower (a major benefit, in our humble opinion).
Additionally, you’ll be doing your part for the environment by reducing greenhouse gas emissions. For example, an electric city bike produces 100 times less CO2 emissions than a standard vehicle. Not only that, but a commute on an electric city bike is usually shorter since bike paths tend to take a more direct route. You’ll also easily avoid traffic, thus reducing your stress levels during what is sure to be a pleasant commute.
Studies show that people ride e-bikes more often than conventional bikes, leading to increased fitness even though they’re technically easier to ride. Finally, riding an electric city bike keeps money in your wallet since you avoid paying for both petrol and bus or metro tickets. With the ebike technology at an all-time high, right now is the best time to get into the wonderful world of electric bicycle riding.