California Ebike Law (Chiu) Almost Done

George S.

Well-Known Member
The Chiu Bill, AB-1096, finally cleared the Senate last night. It seems to have at least one final vote, which is on the schedule. It won't take effect until 2017, but it is a pretty dramatic change in the rules.

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J.R.

Well-Known Member
George, do you know if there will be any grandfather clause in the law? Also is there a plausible way ebikes will be regulated in CA? How will regulators know what's on the road/path? Or is the final law only going to affect new sales?
 

George S.

Well-Known Member
Hi @J.R.

I assume people with bikes from before 2017 won't have to get the sticker. If you don't have the sticker, it's hard to tell the wattage and speed. After 2017, I don't know what kit sellers and builders do. Clearly if you are way over the legal limits, you are in that situation now and just ahead. There's more camo without the sticker.

This is all good for the European companies. They will have the Speed category they want, which is probably more or less 30 mph, at the price of no access to bike paths. It's still just California...

Given the way the market is developing, with lots of high power stuff getting dirt cheap, along with cheap batteries, it looks a big mess, in a lot of ways. We've certainly seen the younger people on this forum embrace, or just demand, power and speed.:)
 

J.R.

Well-Known Member
It'll be very interesting to see if other States will attempt to enact similar regulation. I have little worry in PA. I'm also curious what the industry group behind CA's new law will do next. Shame they didn't put the same effort and money into making ebikes legal in NY!
 

George S.

Well-Known Member
As of 9/15 there are a couple of online petitions urging Governor Brown to sign the bill. It would be politically adept to sign the bill during Interbike.
 

George S.

Well-Known Member
The Bill went to the Governor (Brown) last night when the technical details were worked out.

The law will take effect in two parts. The Speed Pedelec will be legal on January 1, 2016. The requirements to 'sticker' take effect a year later.

One of the reluctant sponsors, the head of Pedego, prefers the Federal CPSC approach. Pedego and Prodeco may have some problems if fast bikes are dominant.

http://www.bicycleretailer.com/nort...gov-browns-desk-industry-ponders#.Vf2S3PlVhBc

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Bike_On

Well-Known Member
Sold your souls to the Devil people, and accepted a half-baked standard. ALL DIY kits over 20mph, with any throttle, have ZERO help in this law and now begin to segregate them as NON-BICYCLE class.

Why did they not make the class 3 a simple 28mph ebike? Fear? Big box pedelec power play over DIY options?

This laws aids the low power (sub 20'ers) ebikers, and locks them in as legal in CA. I applaud that part.
 

George S.

Well-Known Member
The bill has been signed by the governor. I'm very happy that I'm no longer breaking the law daily when I commute on my 'motorized bicycle' on class 1 bike paths.
The thing is interesting because clearly they were not bothering ebikers on the bike paths, before the law was passed. So there's sort of a "Well, at least I'm now legal" aspect to the thing. I think there were a lot of rental along the beaches, on bike paths, and those commercial operators were worried. If no one cared, and everybody did it, nothing much has changed.

The fact is that there are some really 'cheap' and decent batteries with a lot of capacity, and that drives the thing. I don't like 30 mph ebikes that weren't designed to go that fast. But surely someone can make a decent commuter electric 'bike' that just isn't a motorcycle? Somewhere in the 3 to 4000 watt range, which is under the old 5 HP limit of Honda 50's or whatever.

I like the people who say "I don't want a car". I respect that some people can't afford a car. There are ways to make very efficient electric vehicles, and maybe the way this new law is tweaked just closes things down, somewhat, rather than opening it up.

If I want to ride an ebike (hopefully every day) it's going to be a less-than-twenty ebike. But I'd look at something huskier with a real suspension, tougher tires, some speed. Did they shut that down, or discourage it? I don't know.

The Speed Pedelecs may sell. They may work for a lot of people and the JR Cross Current suggests the low margin guys may get control, not the Euro guys. Maybe $1500 Speed Pedelecs will be the spark.

It's always interesting in the ebike world.