Although electric bikes are getting more popular every day, the vast majority don’t know how an e-bike really works.
One common question about electric bikes is whether or not it is possible to ride them without pedaling.
The answer is yes, you can ride an electric bike without pedaling if the bike has a throttle installed. If the bike doesn’t have a throttle, the motor provides assistance only when you are pedaling.
In this article, we will look into this topic more thoroughly, discuss the benefits of riding an e-bike without pedaling and share with you a video where we tested the range of an electric bike while not pedaling it at all.
How Electric Bikes Work?
Do electric bikes work without pedaling? To answer it a little more thoroughly, we need to understand how electric bikes work.
Electric bikes have all components that conventional bicycles have. Additionally, ebikes are equipped with electric motors that provide assistance to the rider.
The electric motor is powered by a battery that is hidden somewhere in the frame of the bike. In addition to that, there are a couple of sensors that detect your speed to figure out how much assistance you need.
And finally, there are two types of e-bikes:
- E-bikes with throttle
- E-bikes without throttle
Throttle vs Pedal Assistance
All electric bikes have pedal assistance. It means the electric motor assists you while pedaling. The amount of assistance depends on the chosen speed mode, how powerful the motor is, and how hard you pedal.
In addition to the pedal assistance, some e-bikes have a throttle. The throttle is on the handlebar and can be activated by a thumb or by twisting the grip (like on motorcycles). These bikes are also called full-throttle e-bikes.
Can You Ride An Electric Bike Without Pedaling?
With all the previous knowledge, we can say that whether you can ride your e-bike without pedaling depends on what type of bike you have.
If you have an electric bike that has throttle control, then:
Yes, you can ride an electric bike without pedaling.
With this kind of e-bike, you can accelerate and maintain speed without engaging the pedals at all.
However, if you have an e-bike, that only has pedal assistance, then:
No, you can not ride it without pedaling.
With this kind of e-bike, you can ride without pedaling only downhill. But that you already knew.
Pros of Riding an E-Bike Without Pedaling
There are several advantages to riding an electric bike without pedaling:
- Hill climbing: If you live in a hilly area, an e-bike with a powerful motor can help you climb hills more easily by using the throttle only.
- Less fatigue: Pedaling can be quite tiring. By engaging a throttle, you can just sit and relax and still move forward.
- Fun: For some people, riding an e-bike without pedaling is more fun because it feels like riding a motorcycle.
- Ease of use: Riding an electric bike without pedaling requires less effort than pedaling. Therefore, it’s a good option for people who are not in good physical shape or who have mobility issues.
Cons of Riding an E-Bike Without Pedaling
While there are many benefits of riding an e-bike without pedaling, there are also several disadvantages:
- Shorter range: While using only the throttle, the battery drains much faster, which reduced the range a lot.
- No exercise: Riding a bike has always been a good way to keep our body fit. While riding an e-bike without pedaling, you don’t get the same level of physical activity as you would get by pedaling.
- Legality: Electric bikes with throttle control are not allowed in some areas. Therefore, you must register your bike as a motor vehicle and you are not allowed to ride on bike lanes.
How Far Will Electric Bikes Go Without Pedaling?
The distance that e-bikes can cover without pedaling depends on several factors, including the battery capacity, the power of the motor, the rider’s weight, the type of terrain, how much headwind there is, and even the air temperature.
As a rough estimate, an average ebike with a 750-watt motor and a 52-volt battery can travel for about 50-80 miles on a single charge. At the same time, the range of the same bike would be about 80 miles if the rider pedals.
Magicycle Cruiser Pro has a 750W motor and the battery has 1040Wh of energy capacity. The bike managed to cover almost 50 miles without pedaling.
Combining different pedal assistance levels, you can managed to cover over 80 miles. So if you don’t want to pedal at all, you must consider a much shorter range.
To conclude this all, we can say that indeed, it is possible to ride electric bikes without pedaling. However, the experience will vary depending on the specific bike.
We also covered in this article a number of advantages and disadvantages of riding an electric bike without pedaling.