E-bike with motors greater than 250w, speeds above 15mph and the UK police

Steve A

Esteemed Pedelecer
Aug 28, 2016
692
410
Ashford, UK
I agree with all comments above, damn!.

One other point is that we all know e-bikes and component sales are on the rise, not just because of age, aches n pains but because there fun and you can get to work without having to have a shower after.
As these bikes develop and batteries improve it will be difficult to know if your on an e-bike or not, unless your doing 50 plus mph by then :).
As said, I think we are being too cautious and overthinking the situation. What will make a difference is when the few spoil it for all. If drone users are not careful the small few could ruin it for them also.
 
  • Agree
Reactions: flecc

EmSeeDee

Pedelecer
Oct 13, 2015
64
26
70
Coventry, UK
The legislators here and in mainland Europe don't see it the same way. Much of the USA's ebiking is for fun and informal sport, not much is utility cycling for transport. The use V8s for that.

Our legislators, as in Japan, exclude any sport bikes on the basis those riders don't need assistance, they only legislate for utility cycling, transport of people and/or goods for various purposes.

That's why it's no use quoting mountain biking or roadies as some have done above, if anything that's less than helpful since it emphasises the sport aspect, which immediately turns off the law makers.

Any serious attempt to get an increase should be based on helpful things, such as keeping commuting time within reason over the longer distances of commuting that are common now; such as the safety factor of having e-bikes more closely matching motor vehicle town speeds to minimise any possible collision risk and subsequent injury and/or damage.

Nor should such an attempt try to get too much. Asking for 25 mph gets the desire too close to the S class and mopeds, both introducing a perceived need for insurance, registration and even a group Q driving licence in the UK.

20 mph might just be possible after leaving the EU and our being bound by their law, but there will be great reluctance to make not only a further change to our newly amended EAPC regulations, but also to the Type Approval regulation exclusions which would also be necessary.

Getting the S class is possibly a bit easier to achieve, but that now means a driving licence in the UK since the introduction of group Q.
.
It sounds almost as if you're advising a lobby group who are about to try and get the rules changed. Is there such a group in the UK that represents the interests of ebikers, or do our legislators just blindly adopt the EEC decisions?
 
  • Like
Reactions: Steve A

flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
46,514
23,348
As said, I think we are being too cautious and overthinking the situation.
At present witn probably only about 100,000 e-bikes in regular use acros the whole of the UK, being few and far between the authorities don't take much notice.

If ever they become much more popular and, like the petrol motor add-ons of the 1950s, achieve over a million on the roads, speed freaks will be in trouble as the police take much more notice.

This latest post about Germany where e-bikes are much more common illustrates what I mean.
.
 
Last edited:
The legislators here and in mainland Europe don't see it the same way. Much of the USA's ebiking is for fun and informal sport, not much is utility cycling for transport. The use V8s for that.

Our legislators, as in Japan, exclude any sport bikes on the basis those riders don't need assistance, they only legislate for utility cycling, transport of people and/or goods for various purposes.

That's why it's no use quoting mountain biking or roadies as some have done above, if anything that's less than helpful since it emphasises the sport aspect, which immediately turns off the law makers.

Any serious attempt to get an increase should be based on helpful things, such as keeping commuting time within reason over the longer distances of commuting that are common now; such as the safety factor of having e-bikes more closely matching motor vehicle town speeds to minimise any possible collision risk and subsequent injury and/or damage.

Nor should such an attempt try to get too much. Asking for 25 mph gets the desire too close to the S class and mopeds, both introducing a perceived need for insurance, registration and even a group Q driving licence in the UK.

20 mph might just be possible after leaving the EU and our being bound by their law, but there will be great reluctance to make not only a further change to our newly amended EAPC regulations, but also to the Type Approval regulation exclusions which would also be necessary.

Getting the S class is possibly a bit easier to achieve, but that now means a driving licence in the UK since the introduction of group Q.
.
Spot on flecc. I think 20mph would make sense. Once the more mainstream become accustomed to the use and viability of them and reality of leaving the car at home more.
 

flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
46,514
23,348
It sounds almost as if you're advising a lobby group who are about to try and get the rules changed. Is there such a group in the UK that represents the interests of ebikers, or do our legislators just blindly adopt the EEC decisions?
Basically I am doing that, since the lobby group are the trade and private members in here. We participated in the consultation that led to our present 2015 UK law.

We've never just accepted EU rules, our trade bodies have taken part in the committees that create the laws, the most recent being those for the L1e-A and L1e-B groups of mopeds, both influencing pedelec and S class laws.

Since we are now leaving the EU, any new attempt will have to be direct lobbying of the DfT by the Bicycle Association, which represents the interests of the wholly incorporated BEBA (British Electric Bike Association).
.
.
 
  • Like
Reactions: Steve A

flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
46,514
23,348
That's good. I didn't realise that you were so well organised.
There's always been a lot going on behind the scenes, BEBA even had an active parliamentary lobbyist in the person of Lord Laird in the House of Lords.

There's also an All-Party Parliamentary Cycling Group, since many of the MPs and Lords cycle to the Houses. They've had e-bikes brought to Parliament by some of our trade members for cycling group members to try them out and discover what they are about.
.
 

cwah

Esteemed Pedelecer
Jun 3, 2011
3,015
178
www.whatonlondon.co.uk
i did 1000w+ all day long for years... sometime next to the police. My bike doesn't even have a chain.

never had any issue. it's just not their business they have other cat to fish
 

4bound

Pedelecer
May 1, 2014
161
85
Neston
www.facebook.com
Getting back to the subject of the opening post of this thread...
I am thinking of getting a 1500w e-bike which can do up to 30mph and I hope that if I drive responsibly (e.g. respect speed limits, not overtaking traffic to show off, etc) then I won't have problems with the police.
As the owner of an S-pedelec I find it hard to understand why you would want a bike with 1500W of power in order to ride it as you say you want to. The S Pedelec would give you all the power you could need to ride like that, and do so in a far more efficient way, giving you a better range for a given battery size.
 

minime

Pedelecer
Feb 19, 2017
158
18
36
Hull
Getting back to the subject of the opening post of this thread...


As the owner of an S-pedelec I find it hard to understand why you would want a bike with 1500W of power in order to ride it as you say you want to. The S Pedelec would give you all the power you could need to ride like that, and do so in a far more efficient way, giving you a better range for a given battery size.
Others on this forum have told me that, all things considered equal, a bike with higher motor wattage will have better torque and give better range than a bike with a lower motor wattage.

I think this forum needs a general FAQ for e-biking. Correct information, appropriately worded with not much room for ambiguity because, frankly, people here present diametrically opposite "facts". Either one can be true but not both.
 

Woosh

Trade Member
May 19, 2012
14,987
12,266
Southend on Sea
wooshbikes.co.uk
frankly, people here present diametrically opposite "facts".
I don't think that's the case. Different types of motors have different features, it is very easy to get confused. Take battery consumption for example, the same motor can consume 5wh per mile at certain speed, 10wh or even 50wh per mile at higher speed. It's the same with other aspects, torque, rpm etc.
If you compare two motors in different conditions, the result has little coherence.
The devil is in the details.
 

danielrlee

Esteemed Pedelecer
May 27, 2012
1,284
660
Westbury, Wiltshire
torquetech.co.uk
Others on this forum have told me that, all things considered equal, a bike with higher motor wattage will have better torque and give better range than a bike with a lower motor wattage.
I hope you're not quoting me there, since that's NOT what I said.
 

flecc

Member
Oct 25, 2006
46,514
23,348
I think this forum needs a general FAQ for e-biking. Correct information, appropriately worded with not much room for ambiguity
This isn't possible due to the unknown factors. The rider might contribute more power than the motor or next to nothing, and they could weigh anything from under 55 kilos to over 160 kilos. These amount to immense power to weight differences.

On the one hand above there's an S-pedelec rider who feels the 30 mph you want is easy with very limited motor wattage.

On the other hand in a current thread there's someone who isn't able to do anything beyond a turn or two of the pedals to get the motor started.

It's impossible to make any unambiguous statements appropriate to both of them, and all the others with in-between ability and widely variable weight. Add in the factor that many won't want to step outside the law and universally applicable statements become even more impossible.

The start point has to be answers from the rider, their weight, their fitness, terrain to be ridden and their expectations.
.
 
Last edited:

Nealh

Esteemed Pedelecer
Aug 7, 2014
11,965
4,639
57
West Sx RH
S - pedelec are good for speed and range. Drive unit is usually 350w and lighter then a heavy D/D drive.
Though bike cost is more expensive all from 36v set up.
Probably one of the best but no longer in production was the excellent Khalkhoff Endeavour with Panasonic mid drive TS motor, my brother has a 4 year old model from new original battery and all in all some 14k miles on the clock, Battery has lost some capacity but still can do 20-25 miles, I once had a go on a local 8 mile circuit and and managed to achieve 33mph.
 

minime

Pedelecer
Feb 19, 2017
158
18
36
Hull
I don't think that's the case. Different types of motors have different features, it is very easy to get confused. Take battery consumption for example, the same motor can consume 5wh per mile at certain speed, 10wh or even 50wh per mile at higher speed. It's the same with other aspects, torque, rpm etc.
If you compare two motors in different conditions, the result has little coherence.
The devil is in the details.
That's why I keep repeating the phrase "all things considered equal".

For example, speed is a multi-variable function of the form:
y = f(a[1],a[2],a[3],...a[n]), where ...

a[1] = motor wattage (bike spec)
a[2] = motor type (bike spec)
a[3] = rider bodyweight (bike payload)
a[4] = terrain type (terrain)
a[5] = headwind (weather condition)

... and so on and so forth.

Let set 'a' and set 'b' represent the set of inputs for two e-bikes that we wish to compare. If the sets differ only in the first variable (i.e. a[1] and b[1] that represent motor wattage), then the greater the wattage, the greater the speed and the torque and the range. Agreed?
 

minime

Pedelecer
Feb 19, 2017
158
18
36
Hull
I hope you're not quoting me there, since that's NOT what I said.
No, I am not. In fact, I am grateful for yours and everybody else's input.

I am a bit frustrated because I don't think I have a solid grasp of at least the basics and it feels like I am flying blind.
 

Tugwell Gibson

Esteemed Pedelecer
Dec 30, 2016
277
314
53
London
It won't then help for me to say that I've just hit 24mph with my 250 oxygen
.on a level but bumpy grass field . I'm 17 stone.
 

danielrlee

Esteemed Pedelecer
May 27, 2012
1,284
660
Westbury, Wiltshire
torquetech.co.uk
No, I am not. In fact, I am grateful for yours and everybody else's input.

I am a bit frustrated because I don't think I have a solid grasp of at least the basics and it feels like I am flying blind.
I totally understand your frustration.

Take a look here:

https://endless-sphere.com/w/index.php/Main_Page

There's a lot of information contained in the Endless Sphere wiki, but it's probably the single most comprehensive collection of information on the subject of electric bikes. Keep in mind that ES is a global community, so not much of the legal information contained within will apply to the UK.
 

minime

Pedelecer
Feb 19, 2017
158
18
36
Hull
I totally understand your frustration.

Take a look here:

https://endless-sphere.com/w/index.php/Main_Page

There's a lot of information contained in the Endless Sphere wiki, but it's probably the single most comprehensive collection of information on the subject of electric bikes. Keep in mind that ES is a global community, so not much of the legal information contained within will apply to the UK.
Excellent resource. Thank you.
 

Advertisers