Electric Bike Laws
Throttle & Pedal Assist
In the United States, we have the luxury of using throttles on our electric bikes, which are forbidden in Europe.
Throttles provide full power on demand and Americans love them because they give us complete control.
They’re especially helpful for getting started from a standstill (sometimes it can be awkward to gain momentum), getting a quick burst of power to climb a hill, or safely getting through an intersection.
If you can’t pedal, or you just don’t feel like it, that’s okay too. We’re not judging!
Pedal assist systems sense your pedaling and provide assistance automatically.
They’re most popular among experienced cyclists that want a more natural, “bike-like” riding experience.
Pedal assist is wonderful for long rides with few stops on relatively flat ground, because you can just relax and enjoy the ride without holding a throttle in place. It’s like cruise control.
Both is best
Our experience shows that the ideal electric bike has both pedal assist and a throttle, and the next best thing is one with only a throttle.
All Pedego Electric Bikes sold in the US have a throttle, and many of them also have the option of pedal assist.
We don’t have any bikes that are pedal assist only (except what we send overseas), simply because most people don’t like them. Even if you prefer pedal assist, why wouldn’t you want the option of using a throttle?
Pedego offers both options, so we have no ax to grind. Our philosophy is the best electric bike is the one that’s the most fun, for you personally, to ride – regardless of the motor.
A majority of electric bikes in the U.S. have hub motors.
By and large, Americans prefer them because they are simple and easy to use. They seamlessly deliver power right where it’s needed – without any extra gear shifting or wear on the drivetrain.
Every Pedego with a hub motor includes a twist-and-go throttle.
Hub motors are also admired for their breathtaking performance. Most Pedegos sport a 500 watt hub motor with twice the power of a typical mid drive. You can feel the difference!
While Mid drives aren’t as common, there are things they’re ideally suited for.
The Pedego Elevate is made for seasoned mountain bikers. Its weight is lower and more centered, and the gears of the bike can be leveraged to navigate off-road terrain.
The Pedego Conveyor is a bicycle commuter’s dream. It’s equipped with a belt drive and internally geared hub that are useful for everyday riding.
The Pedego City Commuter Mid Drive Edition excels in areas with very long and/or steep hills. Its 500 watt motor has twice the power of a typical mid drive, and it features an exclusive twist-and-go throttle.
Note: Mid drives are best suited for capable cyclists who are comfortable shifting gears often. They also require additional maintenance because of the added wear on the drivetrain.
For everyday riding conditions, the obvious place for the battery is the rear rack. It’s the most convenient and logical way to carry extra weight on any bike.
Most experienced bicycle commuters and tourists carry their luggage on the rear rack for the same reason – It just makes sense.
For extreme off-road riding it’s nice to have the weight of the battery more evenly distributed in the downtube of the bike with a lower center of gravity. The Pedego Trail Tracker and Ridge Rider both feature a downtube battery for that style of riding.
But not everyone is a hardcore mountain biker, and the difference is hardly noticeable for average electric bike rider. For casual riding or commuting on typical streets and paths, it’s kind of like splitting hairs.