What exactly is an electric bike?

An electric bike is a motorized cycle with an electrical motor incorporated in the frame to help assist pedal propulsion. Many different types of electric e-bikes are currently available on the market, but basically they fall into two general categories: those that directly power the rider’s own pedal-force and those that incorporate a small throttle, adding more motorcycle-like functionality to the electric motor. Other e-bikes refer to themselves as e-scooters or electric scooters.

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The main characteristic of an electric bike is the electric motor, which provides the drive for the pedals. The rider utilizes the throttle to make a smoother, faster pedaling rhythm, but can also use the pedaling rhythm generated by the motor to create resistance during periods of non-pedaling. This is done by activating the torque sensor located inside the seat, to apply force to the pedals to generate resistance during these periods. The advantage of this method of applying pedalling force is that it allows the rider to go uphill, instead of coasting like most traditional bicycles.

E-bikes also typically come with a small, hand-held throttle device, sometimes called a “stuttered throttle”. The purpose of a stuttered throttle is to provide a more responsive feel to the rider as the pedal pushes against resistance. Unlike other methods of pedaling provided by conventional bicycles, the electric bikes work solely with the power of the rider’s pedaling rhythm and speed. This makes them ideal for those who have limited leg strength or for people who are new to riding bicycles (as well as those recovering from injuries). They are also much easier to ride than traditional bicycles, as they allow the rider to coast freely at any point. Electric bikes work just as well on uphill climbs as they do downhill ones, allowing even the most physically challenged riders to have an easier time riding an electric bike.