Photo: Zap Electric’s power-assist kit turns a conventional bike into an electric one. There’s a bolt-on DC electric motor (weighing just over 3kg or 7lb) just above the back wheel, behind the police officer’s foot, pressing against the tire and driving it by simple friction. The motor’s powered by a compact lead-acid battery (weighing about 5.5 kg or 12 lb) inside a protective nylon bag. This kit adds quite bit of weight to the bike, but gives extra range and speed needed. Photo taken in Santa Rosa, California courtesy of US DOE/NREL.

The oldest patent for an electric bike I’ve been able to find at the US Patent and Trademark Office is this one, by Ogden Bolton, Jr. of Canton Ohio, which was filed in September 1895 and granted three months later. You can see from these original diagrams that it bears an amazingly close resemblance to modern electric bikes. In the general picture on the left, you can see there’s a hub motor on the rear wheel (blue), a battery suspended from the frame (red), and a simple handlebar control to make the thing stop and go. In the more detailed cutaway of the hub motor on the right, you can see there’s a six-pole magnet in the center (orange) bolted to the frame and an armature (made from coiled wire, yellow) that rotates around it when the current is switched on. It’s quite a hefty motor even by modern standards; Ogdon mentions “a heavy current at low voltage—for instance, to carry one hundred amperes at ten volts.” So that’s 1000 watts, which is about twice the power of a typical modern bike hub motor.

Benny offers seamless integration of pedal assist making it the perfect e-bike for both first-time owners or experienced cyclists.   Smooth acceleration at your fingertips with the large LCD control panel.  A Powerful 750-watt motor is powered by either a 264wh/380wh lithium-ion battery.  The Benny is designed to be the go-to e-bike for hilly commutes and leisurely rides around town.

Lithium manganese batteries are used in the latest Nissan Leaf electric car. It’s claimed they generate more power and last longer. The new Leaf has double the range of its predecessor, but we’ve seen these batteries in very few (and very expensive) e-bikes so far.

In a parallel hybrid motorized bicycle, such as the aforementioned 1897 invention by Hosea W. Libbey, human and motor inputs are mechanically coupled either in the bottom bracket, the rear wheel, or the front wheel, whereas in a (mechanical) series hybrid cycle, the human and motor inputs are coupled through differential gearing. In an (electronic) series hybrid cycle, human power is converted into electricity and is fed directly into the motor and mostly additional electricity is supplied from a battery.

The two most common types of hub motors used in electric bicycles are brushed and brushless. There are many possible types of electric motorized bicycles with several technologies available, varying in cost and complexity; direct-drive and geared motor units are both used. An electric power-assist system may be added to almost any pedal cycle using chain drive, belt drive, hub motors or friction drive. BLDC hub motors are a common modern design with the motor built into the wheel hub itself and the stator fixed solidly to the axle and the magnets attached to and rotating with the wheel. The bicycle wheel hub is the motor. The power levels of motors used are influenced by available legal categories and are often, but not always limited to under 750 watts.

My State (WV) Laws are similar. Anything with a motor is a Moped (requires registration and insurance and that kills a lot of incentive to use one). I got interested because I was looking at the Organic Transit ELF. Turns out human powered Trikes are non-classified vehicles here, that is they are not defined as a bike -as a bike can only have 2 tandem wheels- while a moped can have 3 but also has a motor which a human powered trike lacks. >shrug< the reason for the weirdness in the law text? The reason is till recently, <50CC gas motor assisted bicycles were completely legal. Car dealers didn't like it, and pushed to get the laws changed to make it harder to use them. They reclassified the under 50cc motor assisted gas bicycles as a moped, requiring all the usual trappings. Feature: Light weight design, easy to transport; Eco friendly and safe to use High quality and long life expectancy; Stored in a sturdy aluminum casing User friendly and come with holder and charger Modern Shape design, easy to install and remove 1 year manufacturer warranty for CHARGER; Recommended to be used with 36V 250-800W electric bicycle motor   Specification: . Jump up ^ Fishman, Elliot; Cherry, Christopher (30 Jul 2015). "E-bikes in the Mainstream: Reviewing a Decade of Research". Transport Reviews. Taylor & Francis Online. 36 (1): 72–91. doi:10.1080/01441647.2015.1069907. GenZe e-Bikes come in sizes to fit every shape. Height is usually the best gauge of size, but we also recommend comparing your inseam to the standover height if you’re considering the Sport or 201 models. The 200 series also comes with adjustable handlebars and a 4-way adjustable seat to get the perfect fit. [redirect url='' sec='7']