Countries proposing ebike rules / registration

Chris Nolte

Well-Known Member
I was going to try to register an ebike to see what happened. My initial road block was insurance, but apparently Veloinsurance can offer what's necessary to register. I never felt inclined to move forward, but I have often considered it. I think it would be possible in some states. I'm certainly not advocating for it though.
 

SCbiker

Active Member
I feel the same way ... I think the only way to avoid this is to ride respectfully around others .....

Cheers ... B.
 

JayVee

Well-Known Member
Switzerland has mandatory registration for Speed Pedelecs. According to me, it's actually more of a blessing than a curse because the lawmakers decided not to follow EU regulations and confine us to 25 km/h. The 45km/h category requires registration, whereas the 25km/h doesn't.

In Switzerland, you need to pay for registration & plates for Speed Pedelecs but that includes liability insurance. The rules are pretty simple for pedal assist 45km/h e-bikes: a bicycle helmet is mandatory, and your drive can't exceed 1000 watts nominal output. You have to follow bikes paths that travel parallel to the road if they're available, including those shared with pedestrians (they have priority over you). Adequate lighting is mandatory, including for 45km/h E-MTBs.

One advantage to registration is that it has disproven the myth that Speed Pedelecs are more dangerous than the slower category e-bikes. Swiss statistics clearly show that 45km/h e-bikes are not more prone to accidents than the 25km/h variant. In fact those very same statistics show that people with the slower category e-bikes suffer more serious and fatal accident injuries (source in german: https://www.mobilservice.ch/en/home...erheitsanalysen-zum-velo-und-e-bike-1576.html). And so authorities have finally understood that the max. speed of the bike isn't the most important factor in explaining accidents, and are now starting to look at "who" is riding the bike rather than the vehicle itself. Age, behaviour, and experience of the rider are considered as more important factors than the category a bike belongs to. Seniors riding 25km/h e-bikes are responsible for a significant number of fatal accidents, and future accident prevention campaigns will focus on them heavily.

Registration has another benefit: it means I can have the speed and not risk legal complications in case of an accident. I've just ordered the Haibike Sduro Trekking, and the price of the 25km/h iteration is exactly the same as the 45km/h version. Therefore, there's no incentive for me to "cheat" and hack the 25km/h version with a speed doubler.

So overall I can see more benefits than downsides to registration, as it's expressed over here.
 

Chris Nolte

Well-Known Member
Really great inight from Switzerland. That's definitely a perspective I haven't though too much about. I have been thinking that I would like some regulation though. Right now it's a bit like the Wild West here and I don't think that's the conditions which will get large numbers on the bikes. We'll continue to see early adopters, but we really need clearly defined laws so there is less ambiguity in what is and isn't an ebike.

Maybe I'm speaking mostly in NY, but I think this sort of thing exsists through out the US. NY is just an example of what could happen if we don't have clearly defined laws.
 

SCbiker

Active Member
JayVee .... In Switzerland, you need to pay for registration & plates for Speed Pedelecs but that includes liability insurance.

I am curious ... what would one pay for the registration, plates and insurance for a year ?

appreciate any insight, tks, B
 

JayVee

Well-Known Member
JayVee .... In Switzerland, you need to pay for registration & plates for Speed Pedelecs but that includes liability insurance.

I am curious ... what would one pay for the registration, plates and insurance for a year ?

appreciate any insight, tks, B
Mandatory liability insurance is roughly 30 dollars, to which you add a "circulation tax" of 20 dollars. The first year (for a newly registered vehicle) it's around 80 dollars in total (they charge for paperwork), and then 50 each year. This only applies to e-bikes in the S-Pedelec category.

So it's definitely costing you something, but the prices are less exorbitant than for other motorized vehicles. The commute distances here are often short (small country), so an e-bike is often seen as a cheap replacement for a second car.