What is an electric bike or e-bike? Electric bicycles were first manufactured around the 1890s. Electric bikes, also called a booster bike, use an integrated electric motor for propulsion.
ELECTRIC BIKE LAW: This guide explains the rules and regulations for electric bikes. Find out whether your pedal assist electric bike meets EAPC regulations.
If it does, you can ride your e-bike on the road without needing a vehicle licence, road tax, or bike insurance.
There is no legal lower age limit to ride an electric bicycle in most European countries.
But, in Britain you must be at least 14 years old to ride an electrically powered bicycle on a public road.
Electric bikes which meet certain EAPC requirements do not need vehicle registration. EAPC requirements refer to an 'Electrically Assisted Pedal Cycle'. The different types of pedal cycles can be a 2-wheeled bicycle, a tandem, or a tricycle.
EAPC rules on bike requirements state that:
EAPC approved e-bikes must also have a device which shows both:
Electric bikes meeting EAPC requirements get classed as a regular pedal bike. That means you can ride your e-bike on cycle paths and anywhere else that allows pedal bikes.
If your electric bike does not meet EAPC rules you will need tax and registered it.
That means you must have a driving licence to ride this type of e-bike. You must also wear a safety crash helmet that conforms to British standards.
Note: This type of vehicle needs to be 'type approved' to ensure its safety when ridden on the road.
Cyclists Highway Code: Essential reading for anyone who rides a bicycle on roads and highways.
Highway Code Rules: Essential reading for vehicle drivers, motorcyclists, and all other road users.
Motorbike Highway Code: Check the UK rules for riders on safety helmet use and pillion passengers.
Quad Bike Laws: Find out the rules for tax and registration of approved quadricycles in the UK.
Highway Code Electric Bike Law and EAPC Rules in the United Kingdom