What are e-bikes?
Luke Marino takes a closer look at how e-bikes can help people with PH get out and about.
E-bikes are becoming more and more popular, but how is an electric bike different? In short, e-bikes combine a standard bicycle with a battery and motor that helps out when you’re pedalling, making it easier for climbing steep hills or for long-distance rides.
There are two slightly different types of e-bikes. One is known as the ‘pedelec’, which requires you to start pedalling in order for the motor assistance to kick in. The other type is the ‘throttle’ bike, which doesn’t require you to pedal, and instead generates its power through a motor which can be activated by twisting the throttle or pushing a button on/off.
As with most motorised forms of transport, there is a maximum speed limit. Although you can buy e-bikes with motors that reach speeds of up to 50mph, to ride them legally in the UK, e-bikes can only have motors that are restricted up to 15.5mph.
In terms of how long an e-bike battery will last, there’s no definite answer, as this depends on a range of aspects – including how much of the work you are doing yourself compared to the motor. However, a good rule of thumb is that an average rider on an average e-bike should get between 15-30 miles between charges. More advanced models can reach up to 80 miles. All sounds great, doesn’t it? The only downside is you’ll have to dig deep into your pockets. If you’re looking to just get started, a simple city e-bike would
e-bike would set you back around £450, whereas if you’re in the market for a top of the range model, then you could part with as much as £8,000.
In today’s world, e-bikes are fit for everyone. There is a whole range of them on the market, including hybrid, utility, standard road and even mountain bikes.
Heading out on an e-bike still provides you with a good amount of exercise, but the benefit is that there’s a motor attached to provide that little extra oomph when you start to feel the strain – or when you want to keep up with family and friends! E-bikes don’t need to be insured, registered or taxed. As long as they meet certain requirements, you can also ride your electric bike on cycle paths and anywhere else pedal bikes are allowed. However, you must be aged 14 or over to ride an electric bike on a public road in the UK. For further information on the rules and regulations. visit www.gov.uk/electric-bike-rules