Change in e-bike legislation

Wisper Bikes

Trade Member
Apr 11, 2007
5,803
1,781
65
Sevenoaks Kent
Tampering

What's interesting Tim, is figures from ETRA say that 70% of pedelecs on the road in Europe have been tampered with, I doubt that means they have been made slower! Mass disobedience of a law normally means the law is ill conceived and unenforceable.

20 MPH would be perfect, I believe though if made legal it would come with a price such as licence, tax, insurance etc, not too high a price in my opinion as long as we can keep the present laws in place too. The German S class is perfect and hopefully will be adopted by Europe in the near future. Such a move would mean less people tampering with their bikes and more finding the best product for their needs.

All the best

David
 

lemmy

Esteemed Pedelecer
20 MPH would be perfect, I believe though if made legal it would come with a price such as licence, tax, insurance etc, not too high a price in my opinion as long as we can keep the present laws in place too.
This is EU legislation and you are proposing adding another class of vehicle to it. Imagine the lobbying, persuasion, PR, the sheer cost of getting such legislation discussed, let alone scheduled. And each EU member would have to agree....it's pie in the sky.

The most likely long term outcome of masses people effectively 'tuning' their bikes is that we will all be hit with license, tax and insurance. I don't think that is a price worth paying for 5mph.

And you can bet that as soon as (if) more people buy e-bikes as a result of a legal speed hike, the people pushing now for 20 will be pushing for 25mph.

I can understand all the arguments being made but really, bicycles can already go faster than 15mph without power assistance. The kind of people who cannot pedal faster than 15mph on level ground would be better off with an electric scooter surely?
 

eTim

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 19, 2009
607
2
Andover, Hants.
lemmy]There are plenty of faster electric 2 wheelers available - for example (and picked at random) if that is what you want. [URL="http://www.abbeygardensales.co.uk/leisure/electric-bikes-and-mopeds/showitem-E3-MNYGREEN.aspx said:
ESHO HUSH 2000W 48V ELECTRIC SCOOTERS (GREEN/WHITE) Leisure Find Electric Bikes and Mopeds Buy UK[/URL]
Nice plug, but I already own a petrol driven motorbike and have no need for an electric moped that cannot meet the same speed or range as my motorbike. For people that want to ride electric mopeds and mbikes then they can go and get licensed, taxed and insured already. It's not my main point.

E-bikes are allowed to use bike lanes - how could that be allowed if they would 30 or 40mph as a sustainable top speed?

.
Not what I asked! I am talking 20mph sustainable speed. Not too fast IMO considering fit cyclists already sustain this on the flat, and probably a safer speed in traffic ? In my experience at 20mph there are less vehicle attempting to overtake me.

straylght said:
The only way I can account for this is that people can imagine driving at a constant 20mph, it being one of the road speed limits, and think it's quite nippy for a bike, but 15mph is simply a speed that is passed through when setting off or stopping, and so has little frame of reference.

From this observation, I'd say that a legal limit of 20mph may be more of an incentive to get people out of their cars.
It would be interesting to carry out a survey and include a question(s) related to speed. I think the results might be interesting in relation to Straylight's experience.

Wisper Bikes said:
What's interesting Tim, is figures from ETRA say that 70% of pedelecs on the road in Europe have been tampered with, I doubt that means they have been made slower! Mass disobedience of a law normally means the law is ill conceived and unenforceable.

20 MPH would be perfect, I believe though if made legal it would come with a price such as licence, tax, insurance etc, not too high a price in my opinion as long as we can keep the present laws in place too. The German S class is perfect and hopefully will be adopted by Europe in the near future. Such a move would mean less people tampering with their bikes and more finding the best product for their needs.
My guess is that a similar situation exists in the UK whereby people have illegal kits or have de-restricted their branded ebikes (as most are imported from abroad with restrictions), the law does not serve the need of the consumer.

However, requiring a license, insurance and tax would be a retrograde step as this would ensure the vast majority of those that might be converted to ebikes would stay in their cars.

As a dealer, I'm sure you are asked the question about speed and de-restricting on a regular basis ?
 
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eTim

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 19, 2009
607
2
Andover, Hants.
I can understand all the arguments being made but really, bicycles can already go faster than 15mph without power assistance. The kind of people who cannot pedal faster than 15mph on level ground would be better off with an electric scooter surely?
My main argument was for getting people out of their cars, the majority of these will be pushed to reach 10mph and then still be knackered ! (Until they have re-discovered the joys of cycling again and got fitter as a result.)
 
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Wisper Bikes

Trade Member
Apr 11, 2007
5,803
1,781
65
Sevenoaks Kent
Hi Tim

The new class for electric bikes is already being explored in Brussels, the Germans already have the S class bikes approved and on the road.

It's only a matter of time before there is similar legislation all over Europe. Listening to our customers there will be a big and immediate uptake of the new faster class, even if there is a bit of extra cost and bureaucracy.

We are often asked about extra speed, however there is a direct correlation between speed and hill climbing ability and most people are happy with our and other manufacturers current set ups. Of course we can all tweak our bikes a little but only by a couple of MPH or so.

Best regards

David
 
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nigel

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 18, 2006
467
0
We are often asked about extra speed, however there is a direst correlation between speed and hill climbing ability and most people are happy with our and other manufacturers current set ups. Of course we can all tweak our bikes a little but inly by a couple of MPH or so
Well for me my next bike will be the S class high speed i could never go back to 15mph i am always looking for a faster electric bike i loved the ezee torq at 22mph but the battery technology was not right at that time.:D nigel.
 

flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
46,532
23,366
I think there already is EU permission for the basic 250 watt S class bikes, but it needs each country in turn to create the necessary regulatory framework for it's implementation. Given Britain's generally restrictive bias, as witness our unique 14 years lower age limit on e-bikes, I doubt the 40 kph S class would get permission for use in our conditions, such as shared use footpaths etc.
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Old Timer

Esteemed Pedelecer
Dec 5, 2009
1,279
12
My own opinion is that present 15mph bikes are fine, a hell of a lot of people can get along faster if needed. Of course I ride an E bike for a bit of exercise and fun and flying along faster would under those circumstances miss the point for me. A commute might be a different matter where getting to work at a faster rate is more desirable although having said that a 20 mile each way commute is not something I`d want to do on a regular basis at this time of year.
I see the E bike more as a leisure item and as that there is no need for high speed. At or around the 15mph limit you can joggle along enjoying the sounds and views of the countryside with a steady non killing input, knock up the speed to around 20mph and you need a lot more concentration( rather like driving a car at 70-80 on a motorway and sitting back to enjoy some music) push the speed up to 90mph and the journey becomes more of a chore.At 15mph cars can whip around us pretty quickly and be gone in a blink.

No! I think the present limit is quite well chosen taking all into consideration. If I were looking to do a 40 mile round trip to work and wanted to cut down on costs or get greener I`d certainly be looking at a 50cc moped or scooter where you can dress up for the weather when needed and have a lot more protection. BTW, if you do the maths I think you`ll find that something like a 40 mile round trip commute that would include the charging of maybe two batteries a day + other running costs do have a cost, electricity is not free let alone the replacement of the batteries at todays prices.

Has anyone actually sat down and done the maths?
 

john

Esteemed Pedelecer
Nov 1, 2007
531
0
Manchester
20 MPH would be perfect, I believe though if made legal it would come with a price such as licence, tax, insurance etc, not too high a price in my opinion as long as we can keep the present laws in place too.
I agree with that. Keeping the existing limits and adding a new class would seem to be the best of both worlds. I would have no objection to paying insurance etc. I assume that a motorbike helmet would be needed too? Not sure if there are any suitable for summer use on a pushbike though (no helmet debate please!).
 

Mussels

Esteemed Pedelecer
Jun 17, 2008
3,208
8
Crowborough
If I were looking to do a 40 mile round trip to work and wanted to cut down on costs or get greener I`d certainly be looking at a 50cc moped or scooter where you can dress up for the weather when needed and have a lot more protection. BTW, if you do the maths I think you`ll find that something like a 40 mile round trip commute that would include the charging of maybe two batteries a day + other running costs do have a cost, electricity is not free let alone the replacement of the batteries at todays prices.

Has anyone actually sat down and done the maths?
I do that 40 mile round trip to work and it's a pleasure on the Wisper, however I did not realise the true cost of travel. I haven't worked out electric as I don't know how much my company pays for it.
My train ticket costs about £2000 per year, it is also hard on shoes an suits so about an extra £160 replacing worn out gear.
My ebike budget was £1200 for the bike and £200 for the clothing, then £400 every couple of years for a new battery. Put like that the ebike was clearly economical.
What actually happened was: £1200 for the bike, £800 for clothing, locks and bags, £400 for train tickets when the bike wasn't working, £300 on servicing stuff. These are guesses but close, also add on many hours I spent working on it.
1 year on train = £2160
1 year on ebike = £2700 :eek:
However in the second year the bike is more reliable and it needs much less time and money servicing so my cost predicition for this year is:
Bike cost = £0, clothing = £100, servicing stuff = £200, train tickets = £50.
Year 2 on ebike = £350.
Year 3 on ebike = £850 if the battery needs replacing.
High mileage comes at a price but it is cheaper than public transport if you stick with it.

Oh, and enjoying my commute, getting fitter and losing weight = priceless. :)
 

Old Timer

Esteemed Pedelecer
Dec 5, 2009
1,279
12
I do that 40 mile round trip to work and it's a pleasure on the Wisper, however I did not realise the true cost of travel. I haven't worked out electric as I don't know how much my company pays for it.
My train ticket costs about £2000 per year, it is also hard on shoes an suits so about an extra £160 replacing worn out gear.
My ebike budget was £1200 for the bike and £200 for the clothing, then £400 every couple of years for a new battery. Put like that the ebike was clearly economical.
What actually happened was: £1200 for the bike, £800 for clothing, locks and bags, £400 for train tickets when the bike wasn't working, £300 on servicing stuff. These are guesses but close, also add on many hours I spent working on it.
1 year on train = £2160
1 year on ebike = £2700 :eek:
However in the second year the bike is more reliable and it needs much less time and money servicing so my cost predicition for this year is:
Bike cost = £0, clothing = £100, servicing stuff = £200, train tickets = £50.
Year 2 on ebike = £350.
Year 3 on ebike = £850 if the battery needs replacing.
High mileage comes at a price but it is cheaper than public transport if you stick with it.

Oh, and enjoying my commute, getting fitter and losing weight = priceless. :)
Yeh! compared to public transport no contest but what about compared to a 50cc vehicle? Not sure what modern vehicles do to the gallon but from memory nearly 50 years ago they were above 100mpg. I wouldn`t mind betting they can approach 150mpg now.
Take this morning, would I want to jump on my bike in sub zero temps? You must admit it`s not for everyone! but then i`m getting on and when I was young i wouldn`t hesitate to ride 60mile on a Saturday without assistance so maybe I`m out of touch!

How much does a charge from flat cost in electricity I wonder? anyone?

I`m not knocking those that want to commute by E bike, good luck I say because my E bikes are the finest thing since sliced bread and if God made anything better then he kept it to himself:D but at todays electricity costs it`s very easy to not put them into the equation.

I hope you pay your firm for electricity used:D
 

flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
46,532
23,366
I agree with that. Keeping the existing limits and adding a new class would seem to be the best of both worlds. I would have no objection to paying insurance etc. I assume that a motorbike helmet would be needed too? Not sure if there are any suitable for summer use on a pushbike though (no helmet debate please!).
Cycle helmets should be ok if we got high speed class permission, since I think that's the rule in Germany for higher speed pedelecs. In the EU, Sweden for example has no high speed class but a higher speed limit for normal pedelecs of 30 kph (nearly 19 mph), but with compulsory cycle helmets, third party insurance, and a 15 years lower age limit. I've no doubt Swedish rules would suit many here.
.
 

Fecn

Esteemed Pedelecer
Sep 28, 2008
491
2
Warlingham, Surrey
How much does a charge from flat cost in electricity I wonder? anyone?
Easy maths. My electricity company charges me about 10 pence for 1000watt-hours. My Panasonic battery holds 260Watt-hours, and the charger is about 85% efficient, so to recharge the battery from totally flat cost me 260/0.85/1000 * 0.10pence = about threpence

Cheers,

Jim
 
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Mussels

Esteemed Pedelecer
Jun 17, 2008
3,208
8
Crowborough
Yeh! compared to public transport no contest but what about compared to a 50cc vehicle? Not sure what modern vehicles do to the gallon but from memory nearly 50 years ago they were above 100mpg. I wouldn`t mind betting they can approach 150mpg now.
Take this morning, would I want to jump on my bike in sub zero temps? You must admit it`s not for everyone! but then i`m getting on and when I was young i wouldn`t hesitate to ride 60mile on a Saturday without assistance so maybe I`m out of touch!

How much does a charge from flat cost in electricity I wonder? anyone?

I`m not knocking those that want to commute by E bike, good luck I say because my E bikes are the finest thing since sliced bread and if God made anything better then he kept it to himself:D but at todays electricity costs it`s very easy to not put them into the equation.

I hope you pay your firm for electricity used:D
I don't know about a small scooter but I remember that even without crash repairs a 600cc was more expensive than public transport even when I did my own servicing, as far as bad weather goes 99% of the time I am more comfortable on the ebike than I was on a motorbike or the train.
I considered getting a moped but that comes with it's own problems of restricted routes and parking which is why I gave up the motorbike.
 

eddieo

Banned
Jul 7, 2008
5,070
6
I don't commute but still would prefer a 20 mph bike. commuting on train and bus and in a car is so depressing and crowded, the cost would be more or less irrelevant. you just fell so much better on a bike.

The only problem in the UK is the 4th season, 3 seasons would be wonderful......

so what kind of licence would you need to ride an S class e bike? when this was discussed before, while insurance etc was discussed I thought the opinion was that a licence would not be necessary?
 

flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
46,532
23,366
so what kind of licence would you need to ride an S class e bike? when this was discussed before, while insurance etc was discussed I thought the opinion was that a licence would not be necessary?
As things stand it's a moped, so that means the group P licence, registration, number plates, insurance, motor cycle helmet etc.

Once the S class had local regulations put into force by parliament, no licence, but there would be third party insurance, compulsory cycle helmet wearing and probably registration with a rear number plate since that's what applies elsewhere.
.
 

Northern Irelander

Pedelecer
Jun 4, 2009
180
0
If it became compulsory to have any of the following:

tax
insurance
validation certificate for DIY conversions

I wouldn't think twice about ditching pedelec as a form of transport.

It's the freedom from all the above that makes it worthwhile ;)

Keep it at 15mph and just pedal a bit faster ;)
 

flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
46,532
23,366
If it became compulsory to have any of the following:

tax
insurance
validation certificate for DIY conversions

I wouldn't think twice about ditching pedelec as a form of transport.

It's the freedom from all the above that makes it worthwhile ;)

Keep it at 15mph and just pedal a bit faster ;)
Fully agree, the lack of bureaucracy and restrictive usage laws are the e-bike's greatest attraction and we shouldn't be in a hurry to lose them.

Instead of appealing for more speed and more power, I'd rather see us appealing to lose the silly UK 14 years lower age limit* for e-bikes which no other EU country has.

[FONT=Arial, sans-serif]*The Road Traffic Act 1988
.
[/FONT]
 
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Northern Irelander

Pedelecer
Jun 4, 2009
180
0
Fully agree, the lack of bureaucracy and restrictive usage laws are the e-bike's greatest attraction and we shouldn't be in a hurry to lose them.

Instead of appealing for more speed and more power, I'd rather see us appealing to lose the silly UK 14 years lower age limit* for e-bikes which no other EU country has.

[FONT=Arial, sans-serif]*The Road Traffic Act 1988
.
[/FONT]

Good idea, create some fire and smoke screen to lead the policy makers off the scent ;)

Under Freedom of Information and data protection, has anyone in the EU ever been charged with speeding on a ebike?