Electric bikes – otherwise known as e-bikes – are becoming more popular as a way of getting around the city. This is especially true for those who may struggle with long distances on unassisted models – like traditional, standard bikes.
Nowadays, there are also plenty of different types of these electric variants on the market, but most of them have the same fundamental inclusions – a motor and a battery. Additionally, there are assisted pedalling models, where you share the load with the motor, or unassisted pedalling options where the bike can do all of the work for you.
And if you’re after mountain bike models, you can also get ones designed for the great outdoors, or comparatively, options designed specifically for road use.
All in all, these options provide an excellent way for beginners to get into cycling, as well as an effective approach for those looking to improve their fitness overall.
Are there e-bike laws in Australia?
Before you get ready to ride around town on an e-bike, it is important to understand Australian legislation around the technology.
There are several laws surrounding these bikes and exactly how fast you can go on them.
- Speed: If you are riding off road, there are no limits to how fast you can go. But on city streets the motor must be speed limited to 25km/h. A fit rider of an ordinary bike can maintain a speed of 35-40km/h, so e-bikes are not designed to reach high speeds in Australia.
- Power: E-bikes in Australia have a limit of 200w without pedal assist, or 250w with pedal assist.
Put simply, if you want to tackle the hilly terrains that your super fit mates do, an e-bike will provide the grunt to assist you when the going gets too tough.
And in the city, they provide a way for people to tackle large distances that they ordinarily wouldn’t be able to take on riding a regular model.
We also highly recommend reading our article on cycling laws in Australia here.
What kind of maintenance does an e-bike require?
Normal bikes require regular maintenance to ensure they are running correctly and you are not left stranded and electric models are no different.
The electronic components of these designs require little attention, although it is recommended that the contact points are cleaned regularly. It is also important to take into consideration, though, that this motor is going to put more wear and tear on your bike than normal.
An increase in power and speed (for a casual rider) as well as the extra weight from the motor mean that chain and brake pads will have to work harder. Because of this, ensure the chain is always properly lubricated and the pads checked for wear more regularly than usual.
How much does do e-bikes cost?
When e-bikes first came onto the market, they were a premium product and cost significantly more than a regular option. That has changed, with many affordable models available that meet a range of budgets.