Bike Forums - View Single Post - Economic merit of electric bikes compared to motorized bikes
Old 04-10-20, 07:49 AM
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Bikes: Surly Disk Trucker, 2014 w/Brooks Flyer Special saddle, Tubus racks - Duo front/Logo Evo rear, 2019 Dahon Mariner D8, Both bikes share Ortlieb Packer Plus series panniers, Garmin Edge 1000

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Look at your local regs/laws on how the bikes are classified. If you are talking about a gas scooter or moped in comparison - you need to register those and have insurance. A bike does not. So even if you spend 50-70-100% more on a nice E-bike set up at start up over the cost of a suitable combustion engine bike the operational cost will include registration and insurance on the gas bike, whereas you probably won't have those on an E-bike so you will recoup the initial investment over time.

As to numbers - no idea on how to put that out there for ya. Start with the purchase prices, fuel consumption, fuel costs, registration costs, insurance costs, etc.

Also keep in mind that speed is usually limited on E-bikes (regulatory) to 20-25mph. A motor scooter can go a lot faster. So if speed/time efficiency is important this might be a big point of consideration. You aren't going to get an E-bike that doesn't require registering that will do 40-45mph legally.

Last thought - if you get in to the requirement of registration - that isn't just "registration". The reason you are registering is because your vehicle has to meet the classification of vehicle requirements for which you are registering. So then you have to comply with the equipment and construction that is required for that class. It isn't that you can put an engine on a bicycle, make it go 65mph, and get it registered as a "motor cycle". It has to be "built as a motor cycle".

Last edited by KC8QVO; 04-10-20 at 07:56 AM.
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