2016 E-Bikes

E-bike is a term which has been given to electric bicycles and it is catching on, especially in the United States where electric bikes are somewhat new to the streets. The e-bikes 2016 are a far cry from any moped or scooter which has been presented in the past as an alternative to a traditional, pedal powered bike as they are neither heavy nor noisy. An electric bike for all intents and purposes is a regular bike which has been fitted with three additional components, an electric motor, a battery to power the motor and a control to set the mode in which the motor should be used. All three of these components need only have a combined weight of 16 pounds meaning that the bike’s total weight is just one half or one third of that of a moped or scooter. The electric motor only hums softly when in operation and so is not noisy or in any way messy like mopeds or scooters can be. As none of these additional components need maintenance of any sort, like oil changes and the like, the maintenance of an electric bike is the same as the maintenance for a traditional, pedal powered bike. The motor for the electric bike can be located on either of the wheel’s hubs or in the centre of the bike where it is attached to and powers the drive chain. The most popular location seems to be mid-drive which is in the centre of the bike as there, driving the drive chain directly; it allows the rider to feel the bike move in the same way as if it was being pedalled. When the motor is located on the front wheel, the rider feels like they are being pulled and when fitted to the back wheel, turning the rear wheel, it feels like the bike is being pushed. Although the motors may come in different sizes, perhaps ranging from 250w to 1000w, it must be remembered that the larger the motor, the more frequently the battery will have to be recharged. Typically, when a 250w motor is used in the motor only mode, the bike can attain speeds of up to 20MPH and the battery’s charge will last for about 20 miles. When the motor is used in the pedal assist mode, the speed attained will depend on how fast the rider is pedalling but the battery’s charge should last for up to 40 miles. There is a third mode which the motor can be placed in but that is pedal only mode which means that the motor will never come on, even if the pedals are moved. The motor only mode means the motor will be on at all times and the pedal assist mode means that the motor will turn on and off, turning on when the pedals are moved, and off at all other times. The controller for the motor is located on the handle bars within easy access for the rider and the battery is discreetly located on a pannier behind the rider.