The revolution of electric-powered bicycles has gained popularity at a tremendous rate.
A report by Deloitte predicts that there will be about 130 million electric bikes sold all over the globe by 2023. Unlike in previous years, where bikes were somewhat inconvenient, bulky, and expensive machines with limited usefulness, this is no longer the case.
Ebikes have changed in every dimension and are now powerful, more attractive, and lighter.
Better yet, electric bikes reduce congestion, especially in urban areas, reduce fossil fuel emissions, and are fun to ride. There is something for everyone, from commuting bikes, folding bikes, road bikes, and cargo bikes.
What are Electric Bikes for Adults?
Electric bikes for adults are bicycles that are equipped with electric motors to provide power to accelerate forward from pedal assist and/or a throttle. The motors come in various sizes and are powered by rechargeable batteries that are mounted on or in the bicycle frame. The acceleration and power from the electric motor added to a bicycle provides quite a large benefit in terms of comfort, pleasure, and ease of use, especially when trying to haul goods, riding for long distances, or conquering hilly terrains.
E-bikes consist of traditional bicycle parts that have been combined with a motor, battery, screen, and other electrical components added. Often different manufactures will create different frames but they mostly all use the same components made by other manufactures (Shimano, SRM, Campagnolo).
These components all have different functions and different levels of quality which depending on the selection the bike manufactures go with, will be one factor that impacts the overall price of the electric bicycle.
How E-Bikes Work
Electric bikes handle and pedal like regular bicycles.
The electric additions are designed to augment human power instead of replacing it entirely. However, ebikes can certainly replace all human power if desired.
Typically, a person will get their new ebike in a box. They can assemble it or have one of our assembly services take care of putting the ebike together for them. After that, they may need to link their new ebike to their phone via a mobile app. If not, then the next step is to fully charge the battery before the first use.
After the battery is fully charged, the rider will power the ebike on, select their options (often selecting the pedal assist mode 1-5), and they can start their ride.
To take off with pedal assist on, simple press on the pedal and the motor will provide assistance, quickly powering you to your desired speed. To get started with the throttle, simple press the throttle and the ebike will begin to accelerate.
When you apply the brakes to stop, all ebikes are required to cut the electric power to the motor. This helps you stop without accidently applying power to the motor at the same time.
Electric bikes have quite a bit of onboard technology that makes them propel the rider with a simple tap of the foot or press of the throttle.
Many ebikes come with an LCD screen that monitors your trip distance, riding time, pedal assist level, speed, battery energy level, and odometer. Some advanced bikes offer more features, such as alarm systems, headlight controls, GPS, tracking, and more.
Battery Basics: If it’s your first time using an electric bicycle, make sure to read our post on using and charging the battery. There are many details to consider about the battery and if you don’t know the basics, it could reduce the life of your battery + could be a safety concern.
Electric Bicycle Classes
There are (3) classes of e-bikes, including:
- Class 1: Pedal assist only with a top speed of 20 mph.
- Class 2: Pedal assist and throttle control with a top speed of 20 mph.
- Class 3: Pedal assist only with a top speed of 28mph.
Different Size E-bike Motors
Most e-bike motors have peak power ratings ranging from 200 watts to 1000 watts and more; the higher the rating, the more power available. However, the max power output for all ebike classes is 750 watts. Anything higher and it might not be legal on the road in your area.
The location and design of the motor also has a significant role in how the electric bike performs.
Some e-bikes have a hub motor, usually integrated into the front or rear wheel. This motor helps push the wheel along, but it tends to lose efficiency on varied terrains.
The mid-drive motor, usually integrated with the gears and crank, has better hill climb power, increased performance, and better handling capabilities. However, mid-drive ebikes can often be more expensive from the additional components that add the improved performance.
Pedal Assist vs. Throttle
To initiate the electric motor, it can either be throttle-based or pedal-assisted. With the throttle-based controllers, the mechanism will either be a thumb-press type or a twist-grip type. To receive electrical assistance, you press the thumb lever or pull back the throttle.
The pedal-assisted mechanism offers electric assistance as you press the pedals. Ebikes with this system have a controller on the handlebar where you adjust the assistance levels. You dial in the amount of assistance you need. Basically, having an e-bike is like riding a regular bike, but the electric mechanism makes it easier for you.
How to Select the Right Electric Bike for Your Use-Case
You can select an e-bike depending on different categories:
- Electric commuter bikes: For people who mostly ride on the streets or as a hobby, a commuter e-bike is an ideal option. These bikes are light and efficient due to characteristics such as lack of suspension, narrower saddles, and tires.
- Electric family bikes: These bikes can haul as many items as possible. Some have a frame stretched to the rear to provide a cargo or foot platform. They can also have various cargo accessories like bags, child carriers, and racks.
- Electric adventure bikes: For adventure, you’ll need a well-built e-bike that also offers comfort. These bikes have higher handlebars and a wide, plush seat. Pedals are further forward to allow riders to rest during stops.
- Electric delivery / cargo bikes: Delivery companies are quickly shifting to using e-bikes. These bikes have high hauling capacities, and some are extra stretched and a bit unwieldy. They can also have frames for more space to carry more load.
- Economical e-bikes: If you want a simple bike that you can use for short distances, choose a portable one with a folding point on the handlebars and in the middle of the bike. You can also carry it in your truck or even on the bus.
- Accessibility e-bike: For those looking for an e-bike that will make it easier to access multiple areas and rough terrain, you can choose accessibility e-bikes. You’ll have more power to climb steep hills and can accommodate two passengers.
Where to Buy the Right Electric Bike?
Ensure that you purchase your electric bike where you can get full service before, during, and after the purchase. This way, if there is an issue with your bike after buying it, you’ll have a solution. Also, be sure to consider a company with industry experts on their customer service team so you’ll get knowledgeable answers concerning the ebike you intend to purchase.
Ridepanda has all of these vital characteristics + you can trust that you’ll get a quality e-bike that has been vetted by industry experts.
More and more consumers are choosing electric bikes due to their immense advantages. Traveling with net-zero carbon output, the ease of use, and their extended range means that you can use them to get to work, take longer trips, go for more errands, and haul heavier goods.
Whichever selection or class you would prefer for your e-bike, Ridepanda is here to help you before, during, and after your purchase.