Technologies have changed the world, and how we function and exist in it like the automobile, the internet, and the smartphone.
Another technology that is quietly exploding around the world without much attention. One that has the world changing potential – the Electric Bicycle.
In fact, the technology is so popular that in Asia, the world’s largest e-bike market, there are two hundred million of them in use. They account for over a quarter of all the bicycles in the country.
In the United States, the numbers are smaller for now. Yet, more and more people are becoming aware of them, and adoption rates are increasing.
20 years from now, as we reflect back on our search for the personal mobility solution, we are likely not going to remember the world before ebikes just as it is becoming harder to remember it before the smartphones came along.
The modern electric bike is only about 20 years old with most popularity gained in the past few years in European and Asian countries. The early modern ebike suffered from a few dampening issues like being extremely heavy, short ride time and expensive batteries that made them very impractical.
One of the side effects of the technological revolution of the recent past is finally shaking things up. Thanks to the rapid scaling of laptop, cell phone and other mobile electronic device production, a much lighter and durable battery became affordable – lithium ion. Battery packs that used to weigh 20 lbs and provide only a few miles of range now weigh less than 10 lbs and provide up to 60+ miles of range. Today, most electric bicycles use these cells.
Finally after a century of being little more than a fringe idea, ebikes are starting to boom and come into the mainstream. The technology is maturing, and we are atarting to consider e-bikes as reliable daily transportation and recreation for the masses.
This led people to wonder what separates an electric bike from a regular bike.
Why choose an electric bike.
Once they find out about electric bikes, many people wonder why someone would buy one instead of a regular bike. These doubts resolve around:
- what’s the technical difference between the two?
- what are the advantages of an electric bike?
- isn’t the point of riding a bike to get exercise?
- why are they much more expensive than regular bikes?
These are all compelling and valid questions that we often find ourselves answering to customers. After all, there is a lot of misunderstanding around them. As they are whole new type of transportation, people aren’t that familiar with them yet.
But don’t worry. By the end of this post, you’ll know the difference between an electric bike and a regular bike. And what is more important, you’ll know if an electric bike is for you.
The riding experience
We’ve talked about the technical difference between both worlds. But I’m sure that’s not why you came here.
You want to know what’s the difference for you.
There is a clear answer: e-bikes take some of the disadvantages of a regular bike and throw them out the window.
A regular bike is a fantastic method of transportation and recreation. People have been riding bikes since the 1800s and they still do today. It gives you freedom and fun.
The problem is when things like hills, fitness levels, health or even the simple inconvenience of arriving to work sweaty gets in the way of enjoying the ride.
The electric motor solves that.
It shortens the time and distance, and flattens out the hills. It makes riding convenient, easy and effortless when otherwise it wouldn’t have been.
Big hills on your route? You live on a super windy area? No problem! Use that electric boost and swift through the hills. You’ll be able to conquer them in no time.
Is your destination 20 miles away and you don’t have 2 hours to get there? Use the electric motor to travel at 20 mph without breaking a sweat. This will save you time.
Are you knees or hips (or heart or leg muscles) not what they were when you were 20 years old? Again, no problem! As we age, in general, we have less capacity to put out power. Our knees start to ache more, and we feel discouraged. We stop exercising, gain weight and put even more load on those poor knees. An e-bike will get you out of there – it makes it super easy to start exercising again!
Are you afraid your recreational ride will end in terror? Maybe in the past you could ride 20 or more miles with no problems, but now it’s not so easy. We know the feeling. When you have an electric bike, you don’t need to worry about getting halfway through a ride and finding yourself far from home, exhausted. The motor is your friend, and we’ll get you home without a zinch.
Any bike gives you freedom. Freedom from having to drive everywhere and sit in traffic. Freedom to go where you need, when you need, and not have to worry about the price of gas. Freedom to have fun. An e-bike just adds to this freedom by making biking easier and more fun, or just accessible in the first place.
That’s the real difference.
Finally What We Have Learned
Riding any bike at all gives you so many things. Freedom, stress-reduction, better health, more free time, more enjoyment. And we shouldn’t dismiss other benefits, such as reduced car traffic and a better environment.
The difference relies in the fact that e-bikes make it possible for more people to ride and ride farther.
No longer do you need to worry that you won’t be strong enough, or have enough endurance to complete a ride. Starting any new endeavor takes confidence and determination. By giving you those, an electric bike gets you out on the road, having fun.
Electric bikes will never completely replace the regular bicycle or the car. But by eliminating the barriers that stop so many people from riding, such as their health, hills or distance, more people will ride.
If concerns like these have kept you off a bike, then an electric bike might be just the thing you need to get back out there
You won’t regret it!