Frequently asked questions about electric bicycles

How do electric bikes work?

Modern electric bicycles are powered by a lithium long-life battery that runs an electric motor attached to either the wheel (hub motor) or the cranks (center drive/crank motor.) Depending on the bike, you engage the motor by using a throttle on the handlebar (similar to a motorcycle throttle) or simply by pedalling. You have full control of how much or little power assistance you receive.

How far can I go?

It depends on a number of factors, such as battery size, the weight of the rider, the terrain (hills), winds and the amount of assistance you choose. However, most riders will be able to travel at least 30 kilometres with full power assistance; you may achieve up to 90+ kilometres with less power assistance. Larger capacity batteries are also available for most brands of bikes we sell.

Are all electric bikes the same?

No. There can be a substantial difference in electric bikes and comparing them can be a bit like comparing a luxury European car with a basic car made in China. We only sell quality electric bikes and comparing them with some electric bikes (particularly many of the electric bikes available online) is like comparing chalk and cheese.

Do I need to test ride an electric bike?

We highly recommend test riding an electric bicycle as they all ride differently. A bike that looks right may not be comfortable for you. Alternatively, a bike that might not immediately catch your eye may be perfect for you.

How do I recharge my bike?

Simply plug the separate battery charger (included) into a normal power outlet. It’s quick and simple. You cannot overcharge the batteries so they can be left on overnight. In all cases, the batteries can be removed from the bike for recharging. In most cases, the battery can be recharged while on the bike.

Are electric bikes easy to ride?

In a word, yes. An electric bike is very simple to ride. It has primarily the same gears, brakes, pedals, wheels and frame as a regular bike. It just has an additional option that gives you the choice of less effort and more fun!

How expensive are Perth Electric Bike Centre’s bikes?

The electric bicycles we sell aren’t bikes with an electrical motor strapped on. They are purpose built, quality electric bikes. That’s why we say we don’t sell the cheapest electric bikes; we sell quality electric bikes at the best prices. Expect to outlay a minimum of around $1549 for a quality e-bike and you can spend up to $5000 or more for the top of the line models.

Why buy from Perth Electric Bike Centre?

We have the largest range of quality electric bicycles and accessories in store, which means you can view, touch and test ride our electric bikes; try doing that online! In addition, we sell the best quality bikes and accessories at the best prices and our service is second-to-none. This includes a 3-month free safety check and service for every bike sold.

What is the difference between the Classic Line (Gen 1) Vs the all New Active Line/Performance Line (Gen II) Bosch crank drive motors?

The 2014 Active Line and Performance Line drives have significant changes to the Gen 1 or Classic Line drive (see some comparisons below).

The shape of the motor is completely different (Oval shape and more discrete), one of the advantages of the new shape is a substantially increased ground clearance. The front sprocket is also significantly smaller (relatively tiny) compared to the older Classic Line, which contributes to the higher ground clearance.

The reason the new Bosch motors are able to use such a small front sprocket is that the drive is geared from the inside to the outside, that is every revolution of the pedals turns a gear inside the motor at a ratio of 1:2.5. The small sprocket also means that it’s much harder for the chain to come off at any point.

The new system allows sensors within the new motor to measure gear changes much more precisely, as you change gear the motor can detect this and actually reduces the torque applied, at exactly the right time ensuring a smooth gear change and significantly reduced pressure on both the motor and chain, leading to a more durable system. The batteries (300Wh & 400Wh) have also been slimed down into a neater package.

In summary, the new Gen II Bosch motors are smaller, lighter, neater and slightly more powerful (the Performance Line can now assist up to 275% up from 250%, with 60Nm of torque through a derailleur system and 50Nm through a hub gear).

Click here to view a video about the Gen II Bosch crank drive system.

Are electric bikes safe?

Absolutely! Electric bikes are as safe to ride as a regular bike. When you need to stop or slow down, all you need do is apply the brakes and release the hand throttle or stop pedalling to cut the power. All Perth Electric Bike Centre bikes are built to the highest quality and meet Australian Standards and regulations.

Do you service electric bicycles?

Yes. We service any electric bicycle that we sell in our state of the art workshop.

What warranty do you offer?

All our bicycles are sold with a full manufacturer’s warranty, virtually all our electric bikes come with a two year manufacturers warranty on all electrical components including batteries.

Is there any special equipment required to ride an electric bike? Are there any special requirements?

As with any bicycle, you need to wear a bike helmet and follow the normal road rules. No additional equipment is required; no additional laws need to be followed. Common sense is also recommended!

I’m not quite as young, mobile or fit as I once was. Can I ride an electric bike?

Electric bikes are perfect for the young at heart and people with mobility and fitness issues. Our range of electric bicycles includes several that you step through rather than over. And remember, you have total control over how much or little power assistance you receive.

Are electric bicycles cheap to run?

Fully recharging a lithium battery for an electric bike costs only 10-15 cents on average, so you can potentially save thousands of dollars a year compared with driving a car or using public transport. This also makes the electric bicycle an environmentally friendly transport option.

Are electric bicycles easy to maintain?

The lithium battery packs and motors of the electric bicycles we sell are extremely reliable. Apart from recharging your battery, as with any bike there are minor maintenance tasks required to keep an electric bike in top condition. Our after sales service is first class, so if you need assistance with a bike bought from Perth Electric Bike Centre we’re more than happy to help.

Are electric bikes noisy?

Not at all. The noise of the motor is not discernible over other background noises.

Do I need a licence?

No. Virtually all our electric bicycles are street legal and can be ridden anywhere a regular bicycle can be ridden (riders must be aged 16 and over in Western Australia,) if not we will obviously advise you.

The department of transport advises that currently 200w and 250w European standard (EN15194:2009) bicycles are street legal. The Australian Design Rules were changed in 2012 to align with the European standard (EN15194:2009) for electric bicycles, which have a 250 watt power output.

Do I need to register my electric bicycle?

No. None of our 200w-250w bicycles need to be registered as they are regarded as street legal power assisted bicycles in all Australian States and territories (with the exception of the Northern Territory). The department of transport advises that currently 200w bicycles are street legal in WA as well as 250w that meet the European standard (EN15194:2009) for electric bicycles.

How fast can I go?

Depending on the terrain and conditions, and model of bicycle, you’ll be able to reach up to 38km/h with electric power alone. Obviously, if you want to go faster all you need do is pedal.

Why haven’t I seen a lot of electric bikes being ridden?

Today’s state of the art electric bikes look very similar to traditional bikes, so you might not have noticed! But it’s also true that electric bikes are only in their infancy in Australia. In Europe, the electric bike market is huge and has been popular for some time and their popularity and use is also growing strongly in America.

Got a question that’s not answered here? Simply complete the form below and send it to Perth Electric Bike Centre and we’ll get back to you, usually within the day. Alternatively, call us or just drop in.

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Frequently asked questions about electric bkes