America loves automobiles, but a growing number of commuters across the country are turning to their the bicycle and more recently E-bikes for both health and economic reasons.
Worldwide, e-bikes outsell e-cars by quite a large margin. In 2013, 96,000 electric cars were sold worldwide. Over 30 million electric bikes were sold over the same period. Sales in both Europe and India far out sell the 159,000 sold in the US.
E-bikes are practically mainstream everywhere but the US. In China, they’re used extensively for commuting. In the UK, they’ve entered the world of semi-professional motorsports with the Electric Bike World Championship.
One of the trends to look at is the number of Americans who commute to work on a bicycle has grown steadily since 2000. 47 percent on average but by as much as 80 percent in bicycle friendly cities like NYC and San Francisco.
E-bike use in the US is forecast to grow. With breakthroughs in battery technology, lighter and cheaper bikes, along with forecasts for increased gas prices, the US is poised to experience similar growth in E-bike sales as Europe did in the last decade.
One of the biggest reasons for forecast growth in E-bike adaption is the increased investment in bike infrastructure around the country. Cities and towns have begun to see the importance in alternative transportation and have invested in bike paths, trails and shared roadway for bicycles.
E-bike sales are expected to grow by 22% in North America by 2018. The question isn’t if America will see an e-bike boom, but rather, how soon.
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