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Image credit: WANDRD Backpacks

You may have heard about the tremendous growth in the number of electric bicycles in the U.S., and perhaps you have even seen them on the road. You may be wondering what the benefits of an electric bicycle are and if an e-bike is right for you.

What is an e-bike and how is it different from a regular bicycle?

An electric bicycle is a bicycle that includes an electric motor and a rechargeable battery. These help riders by giving them an extra source of power. The additional power can assist riders when cycling into the wind, up hills, or when they become fatigued. Riders can choose to rely on pedal power, motor power or a combination of both. This versatility opens up cycling to those who may not be physically able to cycle using only their legs. With more cyclists interested in using their bikes to commute to work, the e-bike provides the additional benefit of arriving at work with less fatigue and less perspiration.

What types of e-bikes are available?

This is an important question because to understand if an e-bike is right for you, you will need to determine how you will use it. Types of uses might include:

  • Low to intermediate exercise
  • Keeping up with a faster cycling partner
  • Everyday use for errands or commuting
  • Longer, more challenging road cycling
  • A low-cost alternative mode of transportation

There is an e-bike designed for each of these uses. As you shop for an e-bike, you will want to do so with your intended use in mind.

How much do e-bikes cost?

There are four factors that determine the price of an e-bike:

  • The power and performance of the motor
  • The charge life of the battery
  • Bicycle components
  • The materials to make the frame

The average price of an e-bike can range from approximately $1,500 to $5,000.

What are the pros and cons of an e-bike?

The following are pros and cons when considering the purchase of an e-bike:

Pros

  • Inexpensive and environmentally friendly mode of transportation
  • Exercise that is tailored to you
  • Enjoy cycling time with friends and family
  • Sweat-free commuting

Cons

  • Initial investment expense
  • Heavier than ordinary bicycles
  • Specialized, complex parts

Given the ongoing explosive growth of e-bike sales in the U.S., it is clear that many people have determined that the benefits of electric bicycles significantly outweigh any negative considerations.


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