Classifications of electric bikes in the U.S.

Classifications of electric bikes in the U.S.

Classifications of electric bikes in the U.S.

Electric bikes in the U.S. are classified at the state level, as there is a lck of federal regulation. This leads to confusion on behalf of e-bike riders, retailers and suppliers - outdated classifications at best, and no regular at worst.

The three-class system was introduced about five years ago, based on speed, wattage and operation.

Class 1 and 2 e-bikes are allowed wherever regular bikes are allowed. More specifically:

Class 1: an e-bike with pedal assist; no throttle; maximum assisted speed of 20 MPH

Class 2: an e-bike with throttle assist; maximum assisted speed of 20 MPH

Class 3: an e-bike with pedal assist; no throttle; maximum assisted speed of 28 MPH

Note that all classes limit the motor's power to 750W.

Check on your state's website for its regulations on e-bikes, and support a national, non-profit advocacy organization like People for Bikes who are working for a more consistent classification system in the U.S. To learn more about where electric bikes can be ridden in the United States, visit https://www.peopleforbikes.org/.