For almost a decade, we’ve been obsessed with electric transport. The sale of electric cars has soared since 2010 and we’re starting to see charging docks on every street corner. The truth is that there are elements that are holding electric cars back. One of the most notable is the higher cost, which still makes them less competitive than their fuel-guzzling relatives. For anyone looking to go electric, there is another increasingly popular alternative.
Electric bicycles or e-bikes have got us all talking. There are already thousands of places where to buy an e-bike and more are cropping up every week. They mark the first significant improvement to the already technically brilliant bicycle by adding a high-powered lithium battery to make us go further, and faster. At first the designs left something to be desired. We saw electric bikes come on to the market weighed down by big, heavy and clunky batteries. It’s safe to say that this almost took the joy out of cycling. Now that’s a thing of the past, and newest models look sleek and are full of gusto.
What has us falling for electric bikes?
What makes e-bikes great is that they’re suitable for any kind of rider. If you love adrenaline pumping rides you can get an electric mountain bike to help you climb hills with the steepest gradient; if you’re a city worker you can use an electric bike to speed past stagnant traffic; and if you love road cycling then you can ride for miles knowing that you’ll still have enough energy to get home.
According to reviews at www.TheGadgetNerds.com, the rise of electric bikes is also explained by the concurrent popularity of other electric transport such as electric skateboards. Like electric bikes, electric skateboards can be used for commuting as well as fun rides. They fit our increasingly eco-conscious mind set and help us avoid the modern frustration of spending hours squeezed in over-crowded public transport.
In terms of specifications, the best e-bikes can travel up to 120km on a single charge an average of 6-hours charging time. The maximum speed is around 30km/h in the USA, and you wouldn’t want it to go much faster to stay within safety limitations. These metrics are improving as we speak as manufacturers are racing to produce e-bikes that have an even more impressive range. Even though electric bikes are fast, according to Wikipedia they narrowly avoid being categorized as motorcycles and therefore do not fall under the same stringent regulation that applies to those vehicles. Whether this situation will change in the future, remains to be seen.
Why electric bikes are here to stay
It’s not just that we’re seeing more e-bikes in stores, many mega cities around the world are already adapting to this mode of transport. London, which is renowned for its high levels of congestion and roads that are notoriously dangerous for cyclists, is investing in super cycle highways that will allow commuters to speed their way to work under ground. And London’s transport authority TFL even offers the city’s residents the opportunity to try out an electric bike for free. California and New York City have invested in the biggest electric bike share schemes, making it available to everyone no matter how affluent they are. And it may come as a surprise, but China is the fastest growing market for e-bikes in the world.
As the electric bike industry is forecasted to hit 40 million units sold by 2023, now is the perfect time to add a new electric vehicle to your collection.