Society

Electric Bicycles – do you need to pedal to move it?

Have you ever felt daunted by cycling up the hills in your neighborhood and each time after a cycling trip you find yourself huffing and puffing with sweat that you wished you could’ve just walked? Well fear not oh cyclers, an alternative can be found with another splendid Japanese creation – the electric bicycle.

An electric bicycle for sale

An electric bicycle for sale

This bike is just a normal bike except with a specially designed pedal assist function that will make those hills seem like flatlands. They come with a battery just below the seat, and are priced approximately around 85,000 yen to 150,000 yen depending on the peripherals that you want to add like child seats, etc.

The pedal assist function

The pedal assist function

Riding this bike is simple. You simply pedal to make them go and it provides ‘extra’ power to the pedals. With improved battery life (also rechargeable) and no noisy motor (it’s surprisingly quiet) no wonder these bikes are so popular despite its hefty price tag. These bikes gives the rider’s pedal power a boost to cover longer distances that sometimes require a train or car trip. That’s why these bicycles are pretty popular among mothers who pick up their children to and from school, do grocery shopping duties and the like.

A warning though to riders who plan to import electric bikes outside Japan. While the motor automatically shuts off at 24 kilometers per hour, which is the legal limit, there are some cases where models overseas have a throttle that allows the bicycle to move without the rider pedaling at all – this is illegal. So before you purchase a bike, check for the appropriate safety inspection marks.

Child seats & baskets can be installed

Child seats & baskets can be installed

Given the aforementioned points, it’s rather good to invest in an electric bicycle. Even if the initial price is quite heavy for one’s wallet, its long term benefits far outweighs whatever payment you made to get it.

Guest post written by David Balway.


  
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