The European Commission is reviewing the procedure for type-approval of mopeds and motorcycles. This gives the electric bike industry an unique opportunity to start discussions on the legal framework. The matter is urgent, since the European Commission intends to produce a first draft this November. ETRA invites industry players to a meeting on 5 September 2009 at the Eurobike show in Friedrichshafen, Germany.
Presently, the European type-approval legislation for mopeds and motorcycles rules whether an electric bicycle is a bicycle (excluded from the type-approval procedure), or whether it is a moped, which needs to comply with the type-approval procedure.
The European institutions promulgated the type-approval law in 2002, without properly consulting the electric bike industry on the most appropriate legal framework for their vehicles.
Since then, the majority of products put on the market have had a motor output of below 250W and their motors cut out at the speed of 25 km/h. These vehicles are excluded from the type-approval procedure and are classified as bicycles. But, the selection of electric bikes is becoming ever more diverse and a growing number of vehicles have motor outputs above 250W and/or have motors which continue to assist beyond 25 km/h.
This development raises two questions:
1. Are the 250W and 25 km/h limitations the most appropriate specifications for excluding vehicles from the type-approval, thus classifying them as bicycles?
2. Is the type-approval procedure for mopeds and motorcycles the most appropriate homologation procedure for electric bikes not excluded from type-approval?
Presently, the European Commission is reviewing the type-approval procedure for mopeds and motorcycles. This offers the electric bike industry an unique opportunity to enter into discussions with the European institutions on the legal framework, which it believes to be the most appropriate for their vehicles.
ETRA defends Industry interests
The European Twowheel Retailers' Association (ETRA) is prepared to defend the interests of the electric bike industry. For that purpose, ETRA requires the support of the industry and a consensus on how the type-approval should be reviewed for electric bicycles. The matter is urgent, since the European Commission intends to produce a first draft in November this year.
Industry to meet at Eurobike
That is why, in cooperation with the Light Electric Vehicle Associaton (LEVA), ETRA is organizing a meeting for the electric bike industry during the Eurobike show in Friedrichshafen. During the meeting, the two questions mentioned above will be discussed and decided whether and how to lobby the European Commission.
The meeting will take place on Saturday, 5 September 2009 at Eurobike in Friedrichshafen from 9.00 till no later than 12.00 o’clock. As ETRA announced on 25 August, over 30 companies have confirmed their participation in the meeting. Among them are Biketec, Cannondale, Currie, Dahon, Fallbrook, Heinzmann, OHM Cycles, Phylion, Riese & Müller, Sanyo, SRAM, Trek, Ultra Motor and Whisper bikes. Many companies that cannot attend have expressed their interest and asked to be informed on the outcome of the meeting.
At the LEVA dinner in Friedrichshafen on 3rd September, the issues to be discussed at the meeting will be introduced.
Please contact ETRA
All companies involved in the electric bike business are invited to join ETRA both for the meeting on Saturday as well as for the LEVA dinner on Thursday.
Companies that want to participate, or require further details, should contact the ETRA Secretariat at:
Tel.: +32 9 233 60 05
More about ETRA
ETRA is the European trade association for independent bicycle dealers. ETRA regularly organizes promotional actions aimed at raising awareness for (electric) cycling among politicians and European institutions’ staff in a way which makes them more likely to consider and include cycling in EU into their policies.
More about LEVA
The Light Electric Vehicle Association is an association of players in the light electric vehicle industry with the purpose of enhancing the wordwide use of these vehicles and help improve the legal conditions.
Last updated: 26 August 2009