The Main Types of Electric Bikes
Electric bikes have revolutionized how we make short commutes. Designed to make riding much more effortless, e-bikes have made it possible for people with mobility problems like the sick or elderly to find a better way of getting around. While e-bikes have made life better, it is crucial to understand that there are different electric bikes including electric mountain bike in the market. Typically, the difference between these bicycles is brought upon as a result of their features. However, electric bikes can be categorized into three main types. These include:
1. Class One Electric Bikes
The class one electric bike is the most popular type of electric bike across the world. That is because they are considered standard bikes; hence there is no strict regulation for owning or riding one. Class one electric bikes have peddled assist and no throttle. That means you need to keep peddling for the bike to keep moving. However, the motor refrains from providing any peddle assist once you reach a speed of 20 miles per hour. Some class one electric bikes have different levels of peddle assist, while some only have one level.
2. Class Two Electric Bikes
These are electric bikes that have the throttle in that you can accelerate forward using the motor without peddling. However, you will need to keep peddling so that you can power up the motor, even though your peddling will not have any direct effect on how you ride. Class two electric bikes are regulated the same as normal bicycles and can accelerate up to 20 mph. There is no age limit for riding a class two e-bike plus; you don’t need a license or meet a certain age limit to legally operate one.
3. Class Three Electric Bikes
This is one rare electric bike since it has strict regulations for owning and operating one. They are regulated as electric scooters, and one needs to be at least sixteen years and above to operate one on public roads. Unlike the other e-bike classes, you must wear a helmet when riding a class three electric bike, or you will be breaking an important law. The class three electric bikes are more powerful and advanced when it comes to performance. Note that class three electric bikes offer both peddle assist and throttle. One can go as fast as 28 mph on peddle assist and about 20 mph on the throttle. Some class three e-bikes don’t have throttle but remain the fastest at 28 mph.
Which Electronic Bike Class Is The Best Choice?
Choosing the right e-bike for your needs should be determined by many personal factors, most importantly, how and where you intend to use your bike. As from the classifications, it is evident that class one and class two are not so far apart when it comes to performance. What separates these two is that class one uses peddle assist while class two uses throttle. However, both share a maximum speed limit of 20 mph. The class one electric bike is considered the ultimate electric city bike due to its popularity with commuters who live in cities and don’t want to deal with traffic.
If you have to choose between a class one and a class two electric bike, you are simply choosing between throttle and peddle-assist. This should be determined by your condition so that you can always enjoy a comfortable ride with your e-bike. If you are young and energetic with no health conditions or restrictions, a class one e-bike should be a good option since the peddle assist system will keep you active and exercising. If you are having health issues like your knee joints are not what they used to be or have breathing problems, a class two e-bike should be the best option.
For heavy-duty tasks, you should consider going for class three electric since they can take up more work and cover more ground much faster. With the option to use the throttle or peddle assist, the rider enjoys a lot of freedom when riding. Unlike your usual electronic commuter bike, class three electric bikes are also ideal for adventurous activities like riding on the mountain and other challenging terrains. Switch between throttle and peddling also means that you can go much further than using only one mode.
Other Factors To Consider When Buying An E-Bike
Besides being classified under three classes, e-bikes have many features that you can use to further influence your decision. Keep in mind that these bikes are designed to serve people with different needs including those who have mobility problems and are handicapped. Different bikes can be categorized under class one, but they all have different motor types. Some have geared hub motors, others are installed with direct drive motors, while some have mid-drive motors. With that stated, it is clear that various e-bikes can belong to the same class but have different performances.
You will also want to think about the brand when buying an electronic bike, which is a very sensitive issue. That is because many people have fallen victims to con artists who manufacture and sell fake electric bikes. Unless you are sure about the quality of your buying brand, you might want to stick to doing more research to find a genuine dealer. Buying a fake e-bike can be a real rip-off because you will be spending your money on a bike that will not help you. Their performance is poor, plus they can cause serious accidents.
There are different laws regarding operating an electric bike, depending on the state or country you are in. You might want to be keen on these regulations so that you don’t end up on the wrong side of the law. Class three e-bikes are known to have the strictest regulations and are considered a vehicle in some counties. Therefore, understand what the law says so that you don’t end up riding with regular bike owners only to find out that your e-bike is not legal in the park.
The size, design and shape of your bike also matter a great deal. If you are a short person, you will need an electric bike that is ideal for your height. Although most of these bikes can be adjusted to suit different heights, some are not adjustable, which can mean an uncomfortable ride. The distance and activity that you want to use with your bike also matter a great deal. That is since it will help you discover if you should go for throttle, peddle assist or both.
Many people stop at e-bike classifications when intending to buy an electric bike, and this is not enough to make the right choice, as you can see. Since classification mainly focuses on power and performance, other factors like design and other preferences are left out. That is the main reason why you need to do extra research about the e-bike of your choice. If possible, it is highly recommended that you visit the nearest e-bike store so that you can see and feel an electric bike before settling to buy. You will also need to read as many reviews a possible about electric bikes so that you can have a better idea of what to inspect or consider before dishing out your money.