Could E-Bike replace cars and other forms of transportation in the future?
Electric bicycles have grown increasingly popular in the past few years. Everybody probably won’t give up their cars right away. Still, the benefits of electric cycles for individual cyclists and the planet might turn more people from frequent drivers into frequent cyclists.
Power-assisted bikes offer the apparent benefits of outdoor exercise, enhanced range and speed over traditional cycles, and lower energy consumption and emissions than other motorized vehicles. Plus, people who own electric bicycles say that they’re a lot of fun!
E-bikes are the most addictive, fun, transformative product on the market right now, which makes them incredibly effective as a car replacement.
An e-bike isn’t for everyone or every trip. But if school, work or errands are less than 15 miles away, it can replace your car for at least some of those trips.
It’s not an all-or-nothing proposition. This is how Mary Pustejovsky, a mom in Madison, Wis., puts it: “The electric cargo bike has replaced all our trips under 5 miles. We still use the car for trips to grandma’s house 90 miles away or on days when it is super cold.”
Are E-Bikes Gaining Popularity?
E-bike ownership has grown steadily over the past decade, according to statistics gathered by Ebicycles.com. E-bike industry watchers expect to see 300 million of these battery-powered cycles in worldwide use by 2023.
Some Asian and European markets have grown faster than the U.S. market, but Americans have started to notice these handy vehicles. For instance, manufacturers sold about one-quarter of a million electric bicycles in the U.S. in 2017 and over 400,000 during 2018.
Some further research offers insights into the reasons people buy electric bikes:
About 20 percent of the respondents to one survey said they did not own a traditional bike because they did not believe they were fit enough to ride. A power-assisted motor makes pedaling much more effortless and enables longer trips.
Another study discovered that cyclists could make trips on their e-bikes about 20 percent faster than trips on a traditional bike. E-bike riders can travel further and faster.
About half of e-bicycle riders said that they used their powered cycles instead of other transportation options, like trains or buses, because they could complete their trips faster. Commuters did not have to wait for a ride.
E-cyclists buy these flexible vehicles to commute, run errands, enjoy exercise, and even socialize. Most e-cyclists plan to partially use their cycles to replace transportation by cars or other vehicles.
Will I be safe?
Another big concern is vulnerability because of traffic. If you feel the roads in your area aren’t safe, reach out to your local bike community, ideally women, for route advice.
Decide which streets feel safe to you. They may not be the roads you are used to driving. But the electric boost means that a slight detour is no effort. And you can always stop and walk your bike if you encounter a hairy intersection or street. (Then contact your local elected officials and demand safe infrastructure.)
Again, you don’t have to use the bike for every trip.
The benefits of electric bicycles include:
Social Distancing and Hygiene
Many people still entertain concerns about coronavirus and other infectious diseases. A crowded car, bus, or train might spread germs because riders must share circulated air and may come in contact with infected surfaces. An electric bike offers the perfect opportunity to control sanitation and maintain social distance from other travelers.
Reduced Energy Emissions From E-Bikes
The section above compared the energy efficiency of electric bikes to electric cars. Today, most people still drive gas-powered vehicles. This fact offers electric bikes an even greater opportunity to reduce energy use and curb harmful emissions.
A study published by Science Direct estimated that increased use of e-bikes could curb each person’s CO2 emissions by hundreds of kilograms a year. Besides saving energy, cycling also helps preserve the environment.
Additional Health Benefits of Electric Bikes
Reducing harmful emissions will help preserve a healthy environment for everybody. Of course, e-bikes also benefit the cyclist’s health even more. Bikes offer a better chance to work out than a car. On the other hand, skeptics think that an electric bike will provide less exercise than a traditional bicycle because the motor can propel the vehicle.
Typical e-bikes offer a power-only mode, but riders can also use the motor to assist pedaling or rely entirely upon pedaling with the motor off. Globally, power-assisted bikes make up about 83 percent of all e-bikes sold. Most commonly, cyclists use the motor to increase speed and range, but they also pedal. This flexibility makes electric bikes a better solution than a traditional bicycle for many people.
Even better, research– like this report cited by the New York Times– found that most people expend enough effort to enjoy substantial workouts on their electric bikes. Pedaling, either without the motor or with the power-assist turned on, increases the battery’s range, so that offers an incentive to pedal to preserve battery life. E-cyclists can still enjoy a great workout, but they don’t feel like they’re working too hard.
As an added incentive, e-cycling gives riders a chance to enjoy exposure to sunlight. Exposure to sunlight allows the body to make Vitamin D naturally, and scientists have linked deficiencies to serious diseases like cancer and heart disease. The National Institute of Health published research that found over 40 percent of people suffer from Vitamin D deficiency.
As with any exercise, cyclists need to work out regularly to enjoy the fitness benefits. The power-assisted feature of an e-bike lets cyclists ride further and longer, encouraging people to use them more than traditional bikes. The motor makes it easier for riders to use their e-cycles to commute, carry loads, and navigate hills and windy days.
Most people intuitively understand why lighter e-bikes consume less energy than heavier cars or even motorcycles and scooters. The amount of energy required to power an electric bike depends upon the rider, kind of electric bicycle, type of battery, how much assistance the battery provides to pedaling, and cycling conditions.
Still, studies have demonstrated that electric bicycles offer a much more energy-efficient option than electric cars. According to a detailed survey performed by Efficiency Vermont:
Leaving the bike’s bat
Average E-Bike consumed one kWh per 100 miles traveled.
tery on its charger at all times when it’s not in use would consume an average of 22 kWh per year, but most e-bike owners would not engage in this wasteful practice.
Meanwhile, electric cars typically consume about 25 kWh per hundred miles, so an electric bicycle offers a more energy-efficient solution.
It would take about 25 e-bikes to consume the same energy as an electric car for 100-mile trips. The study also found that the average e-bike owner reported displacing over 1,200 miles of car trips with their electric cycles. That switch from cars to e-bikes resulted in energy savings of almost 3,000 kWh.
Are E-Bike the Transportation of the Future?
With the right helmet and clothing, cyclists can enjoy comfortable journeys in various environments and weather conditions. Electric bikes don’t require much more maintenance than traditional bikes, and they’re cheap to charge and operate.
Many e-bike owners use their bikes for social rides, commuting, shopping, family activities, and exploring. E-bikes aren’t just practical, but they are even more fun to ride than traditional cycles.
While e-bikes probably won’t completely replace other motorized vehicles, they will almost certainly continue to replace them for certain kinds of travel. Besides offering eco-friendly transportation, electric bikes also provide riders with a chance to enjoy the outdoors and an accessible workout.
Even better, riders don’t have to be in perfect shape to ride an e-cycle because the ergonomic design relieves strain. The motor helps cyclists power through inclines, various terrain, and longer journeys.
The weather? When it’s cold or wet, dress warmly with waterproof layers.
Finland has a very cold winter, and 20% of their residents bike every day for transportation. When it’s hot, remember that you don’t need to sweat on an e-bike – use the assist.
Worried about maintenance? Make sure you buy an e-bike that your local shop will service. Since buying the Urban Arrow in 2016, we have spent about $500 for brake pads and inner tubes, shifting cable bleeds and small tune-ups – total. Think how much you spend on your car each year.
For theft concerns, check your homeowners or renters policy for coverage, buy one or two reputable locks, park the e-bike on a bike rack and if possible bring it inside overnight.
For mobility-challenged people, there is pretty much an e-bike or e-trike design for every type of challenge.
And I can’t emphasize the personal benefits enough! I feel strong, healthy, mentally clear, never worried about finding a parking spot or getting stuck in traffic. I have random conversations with strangers or run into friends on the street. E-bikes are a source of happiness instead of the friction I feel driving.
How to Find the Perfect E-Bike for Your Future!
You can only enjoy the benefits of this healthy mode of transpiration if you feel satisfied with the model that you choose. You have the chance to select from various types and styles of e-bikes. The best battery power and bike type choice will depend on your fitness level, body type, and anticipated cycling environment.
If you are looking for a new way of commuting or want a healthier lifestyle, we are here to help you. Visit our website to learn more about electric bikes and electric scooter or please leave information to us.