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What are the difference between Class 1, Class 2, and Class 3 E-bike?
FAQsSeptember 07, 2023
Different classes of e-bike have different characteristics and are adapted to different people and traffic laws. If you are hesitating about which class of e-bike to buy, just follow us to learn more about the three classes:
“Class 1 electric bicycle” shall mean an electric bicycle equipped with a motor that provides assistance only when the rider is pedaling, and that ceases to provide assistance when the bicycle reaches the speed of 20 miles per hour. In other words, it’s maximum motor-assisted speed is 20 mph. And you are allowed to ride it on most bicycle lanes and streets, because it has a lower speed, which corresponds to higher safety, and is not easy to cause serious traffic accidents, so the rules are more relaxed compared with rules for e-bikes in class 2&3. There is no age limit for riders, and no driver’s license and license plate are required. But you need to be aware that people under the age of 17 are expected to wear a helmet.
Class 2 Electric Bike
“Class 2 electric bicycle” shall mean an electric bicycle equipped with a motor that may be used exclusively to propel the bicycle, and that is not capable of providing assistance when the bicycle reaches the speed of 20 miles per hour. The maximum motor-assisted speed is the same as that of class 1. The difference is that the electric bicycle in class 2 has a throttle design and can use pure electric mode without pedal assistance. When you want to use the electric motor, just twist the knob on the handlebar or press the button to free your feet. Similarly, you don’t need a driver’s license and license plate for riding them, but people under 17 are also supposed to wear a helmet. Class 2 e-bike is absolutely meet the commuting and holiday travel needs of office workers, students, and housewives. It is worth mentioning that both . As for the lanes that are allowed to ride, you can ride them on most bicycle lanes, sidewalks, and roads if there is no special regulation. Except for some mountain bike lanes, because compared to pedal assist, throttle assist may cause more damage to these lanes.
Class 3 Electric Bike
“Class 3 electric bicycle” shall mean an electric bicycle equipped with a motor that provides assistance only when the rider is pedaling, and that ceases to provide assistance when the bicycle reaches the speed of 28 miles per hour. Although the definition of electric bicycles in class 3 is similar to that of class 1, just the maximum motor-assisted speed has increased to 28 mph, the regulations for class 3 e-bikes are much stricter. First, due to the increase in speed, the age limit for class 3 riders is over 16 years old, and anyone who rides these bikes is required to wear a helmet. But thankfully, the driver’s license and license plate are not needed either. Obviously, the increase in speed may lead to serious accidents, and excessive speed will bring about a decrease in safety. Therefore, although you can ride them without any permission, class 3 e-bikes can only be ridden on highways and roads that are open to all types of vehicles. Regular bicycle paths, pavements, and trails are off-limits.
Of course, the United States is a large country composed of 50 states, and each state has different local regulations, and the rules change frequently. You should be familiar with the local rules and always pay attention to local regulations before you start your riding.
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