Electric bikes that blur the line between bike and motorcycle
With so many advancements in e-bike performance and overall EPI capability, the line between bicycle and motorbike is becoming increasingly blurred. After only about 10 years we have gone from mediocre motors to very reliable electric mopeds – with the performance to match. Although many motorheads may think mopeds are slow, purely electric emulation is a considerable achievement.
Even still, a handful of additional models have begun to push the line between e-bike and motorcycle, remaining reserved for the more intrepid riders. For those brave trailblazers, we’ve compiled a selection of the top 3 fastest e-bikes to reach near-motorcycle speeds. But before we get into the details, we’ll cover the basics first; from how they work to what the average model is capable of. So, let’s dive in!
The Basics of Electric Bikes
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E-bikes have quickly become one of the world’s favorite vehicles, with e-bike sales expected to continually increase from 3.7 million to 17 million per year, by 2030. Either way, these rides remain relatively new, and some may wonder what exactly they are. . For starters, an eBike is a bicycle with an electric motor, offering different levels of power and propulsion assistance. Although many models exist, there are two main types, pedal assist and throttle models:
Pedal Assist Models
Pedal-assist models, also known as ‘PEAs’, are great for those who enjoy a relaxed ride and stretch their legs, instead of the mid-speed fiend. Riding a pedal-assist model is a lot like riding a regular bike, but with super power! An e-bike’s motor only activates to make pedaling easier, providing a variable boost in power when it’s needed most.
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In contrast, a throttle e-bike model works much like a “twist-and-go” style moped, usually without any riding restrictions while often offering significantly more power. In most municipalities, throttle-only models are matched within their own class of e-bikes, even remaining illegal in some areas. As such, we strongly recommend that our readers research the PVE law in their area beforehand.
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What are modern e-bikes capable of today?
There are many models to choose from, although most on the market average a speed of around 20-28 mph and a range of around 25-40 miles – usually powered by an 800 to 1 motor. 500W. Even still, every year we see brands producing more powerful designs and listing them at a lower price, indicating how quickly this industry is growing. For example, Australia is somewhat strict with e-bike laws, including restrictions limiting bike power and why most e-mountain bikes in Australia are 250 watts.
Despite this advance, the majority of models remain usable without assistance and with pedal-only use, so they are not considered electric motorcycles. However, that doesn’t mean models to match don’t exist… Here are the top 3 fastest e-bikes, offering ridiculous performance that almost crosses the line of becoming a motorcycle:
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Three electric bikes that are almost motorcycles
Since its humble beginnings in 1895, the electric bicycle has come a long way. 250W motors were standard, delivering speeds of around ~20 mph. Now we have two 1500W motors delivering bold speeds of over 70 mph for rush-seeking riders. So, let’s jump straight in with the Stealth B-52 Bomber, one of the world’s fastest e-bikes:
#3. Stealth B-52 Bomber Electric Bike
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Top speed: 50 mph (80 km/h).
Max. interval: 62 miles (100 km).
Engine size: 2500W (6200W peak power).
- 3 hour charging time
- 150nm of torque
- Formula Minicross hydraulics
#2. Delfast Top 3.0
Advertised as an “all-terrain electric mountain bike”, the aptly named “Delfast Top 3.0” incorporates a number of advanced components and technologies into its design, all helping to deliver nearly unbeatable performance. Honestly, an e-bike of this caliber could replace your car, especially with today’s gas prices!
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Top speed: 50 mph (80 km/h).
Max. interval: 199.5 miles (321 kilometers).
Engine size: 3000W (6000W peak power).
- Built-in GPS.
- Motorcycle tires.
- Front and rear LED lighting, Carbon belt transmission.
One of the latest high-performance e-bike brands to burst onto the market, this German-made model offers a delightful design reminiscent of a classic Harley Davidson motorcycle, with the speed to match. It is also the first pedal-powered electric motorcycle, operating like a bicycle. In fact, it’s even comparable to a 125cc class motorcycle, with a Class A1/A2 license required to ride in Europe.
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Top speed: 55.9 mph (90 km/h).
Max. interval: 74.5645 miles (120 km).
Engine size: 5000W (16kW peak power).
- Front and rear LED lighting.
- 52V / 6.6Kwh battery.
- Belt drive without clutch.
- Equivalent to 22 horsepower.
One of the sleekest commercial e-bikes available, and perhaps the start of a whole new era of PEV. Described as an “electric commuter motorcycle”, the Sondors Metacycle is easily one of the most cutting-edge mods to hit the market recently; currently only available as a custom pre-order:
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Top speed : 80 mph (128.7 km/h).
Max. interval: 80 miles (128.7 kilometers).
Engine size: 8000W (14500W peak).
- 4kWh battery.
- Motorcycle grade tires.
- 108 nm torque (176 nm peak).
- Front and rear lighting.
Unquestionably the fastest commercial electric motorcycle available and an indication that electric vehicles are more than comparable to their gas-guzzling counterparts. In a relatively short period of time, the Lightning LS-218 surpasses the power of most modern superbikes. The future is here!
Going through motodaily.com
Top speed : 218 mph (350.8 km/h).
Max. interval: 160–180 mi (260–290 km).
Power: 200 hp (14,500 W peak).
- Battery 12-20 kWh.
- Charging time from 30 to 90 minutes.
- 227nm torque.
- Front and rear lighting.
- Regenerative braking.
There you have it, these are the 3 fastest e-bikes on the market, easily pushing the boundaries between bike and motorcycle. Of course, we would like to give a short honorable mention to a selection of electric dirt bikes. They offer great power and versatility, but just didn’t make the top 3.
As mentioned throughout this article, it is important to know the local laws before riding, especially on such powerful models. These e-bike power laws vary by state, country, and even city borders.