Electric Bikes Sussex has announced that it will introduce speed pedelecs to its stores, with the added bonus of handling the necessary legal registrations in store.
Speed Pedelecs fall outside of standard electric bike rulings, which limit builds to 15.5 mph and just 250W of electrical output, meaning that they fall within the categorisation of mopeds. Able to reach 45kph, speed pedelecs have been a touchy subject for the bicycle business, with warnings issued that there is “no grey area” in type approval.
Noting that those who wish to buy an electric bike designed to fall within the moped classification often encounter trouble, Electric Bikes Sussex has moved to take the legwork out of ensuring customers are riding legally.
Managing director Graham Rowe explains: “It’s true. You can now buy a speed pedelec for yourself. We also offer a personalised ‘registration service’, whereby we can clear all the regulatory DVLA Registration challenges on your behalf, leaving you to arrange insurance and ride away.”
He adds: “It’s important to understand the distinction between these 100% UK legally compliant models and other inferior, or illegal electric bikes.
“With a choice of bikes, from leading European brands, including Koga and Riese & Muller, and with prices from around £3.201 per day, why wouldn’t you want one?”
Customers will however have to arrange their own insurance, though Electric Bike Sussex can offer advice if needed. A motorbike standard helmet is also a requirement for speed pedelec riders.
On speed pedelecs all the components – including brakes, wheels, forks and frame – are approved for higher speeds. There are various other mandatory differences. For example, a speed pedelec must have a mirror and daytime running lights.
Like mopeds, these builds must be ridden on the roads and not on cycle or shared use paths, unless otherwise stated.
Speed pedelecs are widely considered to be a viable solution for longer commutes. Indeed, research research carried out by University of Brighton showed that the average cyclist considers a reasonable commute by conventional bike to be two to three miles. Ask the same question to an electric bike commuter and they say eight to ten miles. This means that commuting by electric bike becomes more realistic for a much wider range of people. Inhibitors to people commuting further is speed and/or or duration of journey. A speed pedelec can reduce journey times significantly.
For analysis of where the speed pedelec market is likely to go and the opportunities, check in with our columnist Ed Benjamin here.