Already a couple of decades ago, many mobility experts believed that the electric moped would become the forerunner of zero-emission mobility in cities. This is because the crackdown on emissions has strangled the classic “cinquantini” 2T, but the 50 4Ts are too little powerful and too expensive to meet the needs of the market. On the contrary, even the simplest electric powertrains can offer better performance, so an electric moped today is not only more ecological and quiet, but also more at ease in traffic, especially when shooting at traffic lights or with two people on board. It is no coincidence that even before the covid-19 crisis, electric vehicles were already well represented in the top 10of the best-selling mopeds.
Today, proposals with very different technologies coexist in this segment : even if the batteries are now all lithium-ion or lithium-polymer, there are solutions with the motor inside the rear wheel (motor-wheel) and solutions with the more classic central motor and belt drive. Next to those that the Code catalogs as L2e – equivalent to the classic 50 cc, therefore limited to 45 km / h by law – the L3e are also taking hold, which usually focus on the 70-70 formula: 70 km / h and 70 km of autonomy but require 16 years of driving and an A1 license or a B license directly.
Before tackling the choice of an electric moped, it is therefore good to analyze your mobility needs: how many km you travel on a daily or weekly basis, with what average speed, in what traffic and route conditions, and what load capacity is needed.
THE DIFFERENCES COMPARED TO A PEDAL ASSISTED BIKE
Today, however, we must first of all ask ourselves the mother of all questions: do I need an electric scooter or a pedal assisted bicycle? Net of the incentives, the purchase price for the bike is in a slightly lower fork than that for a scooter, so the comparison must be made on other factors.
An L2e scooter reaches 45 km / h, an L3e at 70 km / h and often more. A bicycle has no limits, but the legal assistance is active up to 25 km / h, which means that this is the ideal cruising speed; you can go further … sweating, which is not the goal during a move other than physical training. In general, on the famous route from A to B, the scooter is a little faster.
Despite numerous exceptions, a scooter normally has a plastic body that protects at least the lower part of the body from splashes, wind and rain; it is usually also possible to mount a plexi to complete the protection. On a bicycle it is necessary to entrust protection to protective clothing, and in case of bad weather the legs easily get dirty as well as getting wet.
- Agility in traffic
Good game: the bike is very light and much leaner, the scooter has smaller wheels and a lower center of gravity. It depends on individual preferences.
- Load capacity
An e-city bike usually has at least one rear luggage rack, to which it is possible to fix packages that are not too heavy and bulky, or small floppy side bags; the rest must be in the backpack. On an electric scooter the underseat is often occupied at least to a large extent by the batteries, but it is usually possible to take advantage of the flat platform; in many cases it is then possible to mount (buying them separately) luggage racks and top cases.
Considering that the bicycle has lower weight, narrower tires and above all it only partially uses the electric motor to move forward relying on the legs of those who pedal, even with a smaller battery it easily ensures distances of 80-100 km. For an electric scooter, the range depends on the use, but often is around 60 km.
You have to see the two sides of the coin: finding a place for a bicycle is certainly easier, but an e-bike may not enter the lift so easily, for example, or easily climb a ladder precisely because it is heavier. of a normal bike. The battery can be taken away, but it is easier to steal than a scooter, which if left on the street with a good anti-theft device becomes less attractive to a thief, especially if the batteries have been removed.
- Running costs
Here the e-bike wins hands down, because after the purchase the maintenance is limited to a few minor overhauls and the replacement of tires and pads. Even on an electric scooter, the coupons are not much, but you have to deal with compulsory road tax, insurance and helmet, plus a minimum of protective clothing (at least gloves and jacket).