There’s a lot of regular riders, or those who don’t ride, who wonder about e-Bikes. There’s been many two-wheeled electrically-motored things sold in the past, but really today’s modern e-Bike is pretty-much like a normal bike. Of course, a test ride is best, but this may answer some of your questions.
What is an e-Bike?
An e-Bike is a regular bike which also has an inbuilt auxiliary electric motor and battery. The motor is to assist with your ride – this could be to increase your range, or help you up hills, or just to allow ‘sweat-free’ commuting. All the bikes we stock have ‘pedal assist’ – when switched on, the motor kicks in as you pedal. The amount it assists depends upon what level you set it at. Some bikes on in our showroom also have a hand throttle. All of our bikes can be ridden with or without assistance from the motor.
Is it legal to ride it on the roads?
Australia has two sets of legislation with respect to ‘power-assisted bicycles’. (Check VicRoads’ website for detailed descriptions.) The first has been around for some time, and requires that the bike’s main method of propulsion must be pedals and the motor must not be in excess of 200w.
The newer legislation aligns with Europe’s ‘Pedalec’ rules – it allows a more powerful 250w motor, which will assist you up to 25km/h and it cannot have a hand-throttle – they operate through pedal assist. They will, of course, go faster than 25km/h, but you have to be providing the ‘push’ to do that.
All of the e-Bikes we stock fall under one of these two rules – and all are deemed to be ‘bicycles’ by the law, and so are free to be used as any bike would be. This includes on and off-road use, bike paths and similar, with no license or registration required .
Aren’t the batteries expensive?
The battery is a significant part of the purchase price. But, considering a tank of petrol costs $80, it’s really only a handful of refills before you’d offset the cost of a replacement battery. All our batteries come with a 2 year warranty and many will easily last double that.
Can I ride them in the rain?
Our bikes come equipped to handle the worse of conditions – many include mudguards and are very well suited no matter what the weather throws at you.
How much do they cost to run, and how far will they go on a charge?
Recharging your bike only takes a few hours, and so a charge will cost under $0.10, depending upon the bike model.
Distances vary, depending upon the level of assist you choose, hills, wind, temp etc. However, all of our bikes will generally provide a minimum of 25-30km on full assist, and up to 100km+ on an eco mode. That’s $0.30 per 100km!
Isn’t it ‘cheating’?
The e-Bike market mainly revolves around commuting, as well as some recreational and delivery-based riding. Given that all of these uses allow people to use a transport option other than a car or public transport, we don’t consider it cheating at all. It’s just another way for more people to get on a bike!