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How does an E-Bicycle Work

When someone hears Electric Bicycle, the first image that comes to their mind may be a scooter or electric motorcycle. An Electric Bicycle is way different - just picture a regular bicycle, then add electrical components to it like a motor, a battery, and a controller – all seamlessly integrated into the design. These items make up the fundamentals of all Electric Bicycles available in the market.


Electric Bicycle motors come in a wide variety of power ratings, from 200W to 1,000W. The legal limit in India is 250W, although different countries can set their own limits. Think of this limit kind of like horsepower. A higher rating means that the E-Bicycle will be able to pull more weight with greater ease – but at the expense of using more battery capacity while doing so.

One more factor needs to be considered, however. The design and location of the motor plays an important role in how Electric Bicycles work. The most common type of motor for Electric Bicycles is called a hub motor. It is generally integrated into the rear or front wheel. When engaged, it pulls or pushes the wheel along.

How does an E-Bicycle Work - Motor
How does an E-Bicycle Work - Battery


Since the battery affects the weight, style, and range of the E-Bicycle, its choice is crucial. Batteries play a huge part in how Electric Bicycles work. The majority of the batteries you will find offered on the market are just 1 type - Lithium-Ion

These are the newest technology in batteries. A Lithium battery has a lifetime roughly 2-3 times that of the older lead acid batteries. Lithium batteries are much lighter and also are largely maintenance-free.

Its main advantages include;

  1. Lightweight – High-capacity, 36V 10Ah Lithium-ion batteries can weigh as little as 2.5 Kgs.
  2. Offer a longer riding range – a 10Ah battery for example can travel up to 60kms in pedal-assist mode.
  3. Longer life span of about 800-1000 charges or 3 years of virtually daily use.


Available in a variety of styles, the Display/Controller lets you operate the electric assistance on your Electric Bicycle and also sometimes gives you access to various other riding parameters depending on the type of controller. The display/controller is located on the handlebar for ease of use. There are two main styles of riding – pedal-activated and throttle-based controllers.

Pedal-activated systems offer electric assistance as you press down on the pedals. There is no need to engage a throttle – simple pedaling will do the trick. Electric Bicycles with pedal-activated systems lets you adjust the level of assistance that you receive from as you pedal with the help of the display/controller mounted on the handlebar. You can set the level of assistance you want, ranging from no assistance to a great deal of assistance.

Throttle-based controllers work with a simple throttle mechanism. The throttle will either be a twist-grip type or a thumb-press type. With a throttle, you simply pull back or press the throttle to receive the electric assistance. Throttle mode on electric bicycles require nothing more than activating the throttle, allowing you to ride without the need for pedaling.

How does an E-Bicycle Work - Display

Electric Bicycles pedal and handle just like a regular Bicycle. By and large, an Electric Bicycle will use the same parts too. The Electric components are meant to augment human power, not completely replace it. It makes obstacles like hills and headwind more manageable and allows you to travel further without getting as tired.


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