Biggest advantage: Hills don't exist for me. We live in a city with quite a few hills and day care is about 70-100m below our appartment. Doing this trip twice a day with its 15% slope would take way longer and exhaust me, before the day even started. The way downhill to day care is now something like 10 minutes and back up 11 minutes.
Biggest disadvantage: If you drive on mostly flat terrain, there's no real benefit – it might even slow you down. I get my regular bike to 25km/h easily. An E-Bike accelerates until it hits 25km/h and then it's just a damn heavy bike (17-20kg) that is slower than a regular bike (if you're a somewhat fit person).
Anyways, I love the E-Bike for the simple fact that I go almost anywhere by bike, can take my kid with me and don't have to think about any hills at all.
My first one was a cheap/old 26" dirtbike with hydraulic brakes. It was OK but the front shock and relatively skinny wheels were a limiting factor.
My second bike is a mid/high quality 27.5" dirtbike with a good front shock and good hydraulic brakes. And it's a really good bike all year. I highly recommend getting fairly large wheels with wide tires and a good front shock for a conversion bike.
I think the problem is range, you won't be able to hide much battery, the one on my bike weighs 6LBs and is quite bulky.
In reality it doesn't really matter because the motor will more than offset the extra drag and weight of a heavy bike.
Interesting, that seems to be exactly what I was thinking of. The good thing is, it seems you could use it without a battery, or with differently sized batteries depending on need. If I'm reading this right, the motor, wiring, etc, weighs about 1000g, then a 6Ah battery another 850g, or a 9Ah battery 1250g. So only an extra kilo if you just wanted to use it as a normal bike, and if you're commuting, you might know exactly what capacity you need, and could just take that. Especially in cities, there's a lot of carrying bikes up and down stairs.
Just needs to be a lot cheaper than 3000 Euros!
I think it’s the closest you’ll find to a bike the looks and operates almost identically to a traditional bike. No wires, no display, excellent weight, etc. Obviously the price is out of control, but still the right idea I think.
1) cars can go a lot faster and on highways
2) cars can haul lots of cargo
3) cars can have 3-6 passengers
4) cars drive just fine in strong wind / rain / snow
5) cars are a lot safer on roads
There are obvious disadvantages too, but, regardless, ebikes are not car replacements. They are good for relatively short trips in places with good bicycle infrastructure.
You can hire a car, or a van, for other tasks that require those advantages. Or even (shock!) use public transport.
I use my bike 90% of the time. But unfortunately, I do need a car for the remaining 10%.
I’ve seen people do similar and it gives me a nervous fit. Looks insanely dangerous from a bystander POV.
I'm from that country with the bikes 'n dykes (The Netherlands) and lately it seems a trend that elder use e-bikes instead of whatever else they were using (car, moped, bicycle, legwagon). They're severely slowed down if they were to use a regular bike. This way, they can get some fresh air and actually see some of nature and adjacent cities/village.
The biggest disadvantage to me is the high price. Combine that with these elder who'd also use these e-bikes to go for longer routes but then they'd not put their bike locked securely (and you should use some good locks). Cause yeah, losing 1-2k EUR from just doing groceries is a shame. They're also a bit more difficult to transport in public transport than a regular bike and more so a folding bike (latter is freely used on Dutch railways called NS).
I also notice that the e-bikes can pass me on longer courses, but if we're going from traffic light to traffic light I accelerate way quicker on my regular bicycle than e-bikes. If I do my best, I can slowly pass an e-biker.
If you wanna take your kid with you, a "bakfiets" (a bicycle with a way to transport items in the front of the wheel see ) also works. Especially common in Amsterdam.
The Cube Design Museum in Kerkrade had an exhibition (in NL/EN/DE language available) about bicycles with all kind of bicycles of the past and the future, including experimental designs. When I went, IIRC in september 2017, they also had an exposition about toilets, and a floor about past failed designs (a lot of electronics but not solely), There's World of Bricks (Lego) as well in the Continuum Museum nearby. Recommended! (Disclaimer: not affiliated.)
Personally, i feel like you should just not have the 25kmh limit and need a license.
I don't really see how they're more dangerous than scooters in the same vehicle category.
And our laws are often more lax then Europe's. Specifically when it comes to freedoms (like weapons & privacy). Source: former EU citizen.
Of course, fit cyclists can cruise at 30+. But to get to that level, you've to put in serious effort and by the time you got the power, you know your responsibilities too. But giving anybody 30km/h vehicle that is legal on shared paths ain't good idea.
If you're afraid of cars overtaking you, get a small motorcycle.
Sustaining 20-25 is easy for me on a calm day. But on steep roads or windy days it's definitely more in the 10-15 or 15-20 ballpark.
(This is from experience. I am fit, cycle 22km every working day (roughly 5200km per year) with elevation differences and have an excellent bike.
That is true when you're riding uphill and/or into a headwind, but that should also be made up by the fact that the headwind/ascent becomes a tailwind/descent when you ride in the other direction.
The speeds I attain on my conventional bike range from 25 to 30 km/h on flat ground, 10 to 15 km/h going up 5% grades, but between 30 to 40 km/h going down the same grades. Headwinds on flat ground reduce my speed to 20 to 25 km/h (15 to 20 km/h if it's strong), but with a tailwind, I can maintain 30 to 35 km/h (or even up to 40 km/h if it's strong) on flat ground.
The only thing I don't like when riding are side wind gusts, but I suspect that a motor wouldn't make much of a difference in that case :)
> That is true when you're riding uphill and/or into a headwind, but that should also be made up by the fact that the headwind/ascent becomes a tailwind/descent when you ride in the other direction.
Not a great comfort when you are trying to get to work.
And in my experience, after several hours at work, the wind dies down or changes direction by the time I want to go home.
> side wind gusts
I would expect the greater mass of the motorized bicycle to help the rider stay grounded.
> I would expect the greater mass of the motorized bicycle to help the rider stay grounded.
That might be the case when riding a motorcycle (since it weighs quite a bit more than the rider), but even the heaviest e-bikes would still be lighter than the rider.
Doing 50 km/h in good shape and on flat ground. Keeping up with the overground and the cars.
Moreover, if you can do 50 km/h of sustained speed, you should become a professional cycler. The world record is around 55 km in an hour. Pro cyclers can only sustain > 50 km/h speeds for shorter periods:
Of course, short stretches of 40 or 50 km/h is doable, but most fit cyclers cannot sustain that for 3 mile stretch. So, either you are near-pro or overestimating your average speed ;).
Ps. I pass the vast majority of (clearly non-recreational) cyclers (> 95%).
The speed is not overestimated. The overground and the car have a well defined speed for comparison. Sometimes a friend would happen to drive along on the road on his way home and be surprised that I keep up with his car.
I cycled every day for a decade. That's a good training I guess.