10 Reasons to Make Your Next Bike Electric
A good electric bike allows the average cyclist to travel as fast or faster than a much fitter cyclist on a conventional bike, and with far less effort. In congested towns the electric bike magnifies the wonderful advantages of the conventional cycle; it’s a largely ‘congestion proof’ mode of transport but with a more consistent average speed.
Have more fun
Experiencing the smooth, quiet magic carpet ride of a good quality electric bike for the first time almost always produces a huge grin.
Technical types will love exploring ‘smart’ electric bikes where power profiles can be tweaked and on-board electronics may let you channel power back into the battery (regenerative braking). Then there is the world’s first chainless ‘series’ electric bike for those wanting to pioneer technical cool and groundbreaking design.
Hills and headwinds conquered
Cycling seems like a piece of cake until you hit a hill or a headwind. Electric bikes come into their own in cancelling out gradients and gusts. Some bikes even have inbulit gradient sensors, automatically boosting power levels when they detect a hill.
Reliable and long range electric commuting
Extend the range, speed and reliability of bike commuting, making a long commute easier and faster so you are more likely to arrive on time. Round trip commutes of 20 miles plus are now easily within the capability of the average rider. Electric bike quality and reliability is at an all time high too.
Surveys into why people don’t cycle to work have revealed looking sweaty and dishevelled as a major turn-off. Invest in an electric and sweat no more.
Sounds unlikely? Yet many electric bike riders say the extra power they pack makes them feel able to avoid potentially dangerous situations more easily. Whilst irrefutable scientific proof is awaited, there is supporting logic. Slog up a steep, busy road at 6mph then travel at 12mph with an electric bike you will see 33% fewer cars, passing you at 18mph rather than 24mph.
Still get some exercise
Dial up or down the power assist levels to get as much or as little assistance as you like. A one hour ride on an electric bike – with power set at a low level to stop you getting exhausted on hills – could easily burn 200-500 calories, the equivalent of many other sporting activities.
Cheaper than other motorised options
Legally speaking an electric bike is an ordinary bicycle, so there is no need for expensive red tape such as road tax and insurance.
Despite the initial outlay and the cost of replacement batteries (the most expensive ‘consumable’ on an electric bike) running costs look good when measured against motor powered alternatives. Transport and energy magazine A to B, which has tested hundreds of electric bikes, puts typical running costs at 8-12 pence per mile as against 20-60p by train and 30-150p for a small car.
Financially and practically electric bikes make great replacements for second cars.
They are green
Electric bikes typically use energy at an average rate of a few hundred watts, against 15,000 or so for a car. No other street legal, commercially available motor vehicle can match figures of this kind. Recharge with renewable electricity and you have impeccably green credentials.
Great for friendly cycling in ‘mixed’ groups
Electric bikes mean all abilities can ride together; grandad might want to tag along on an electric with his offspring on ‘unpowered’ steeds. There are also electric bikes especially for those with medical conditions and ones tailor-made for all manner of disabilities.