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Old 21.06.2008, 07:32
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Law on electric bikes

Does anyone know the Swiss law on electric bikes? Apparently the Swiss and Germans have different rules to the rest of Europe, in that electric assistance can be given at speeds of more than 25 kph, although a special license (for a moped?) may be needed. The operative word is 'Mofazulassung' in Switzerland and 'Kleinkraftrad' in Germany, neither of which mean anything to this Francophone.

Electric bikes seem such an obvious solution to the problems of CO2 and high fuel prices, not to mention cardiac arrest in mountainous areas, that I'm surprised that they aren't more widely used. Price may have something to do with it - a high power version from these people http://www.biketec.ch can cost more than CHF 5,000.
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Old 21.06.2008, 11:54
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Re: Law on electric bikes

The bicycles with a faster motor than 25 km/h are basically treated like category M motorbikes, only that you're not required to wear a helmet. A theoretical examn is required for cat. M except if you've already a cat. A, A1, B (the most common), C, D driving license. For a bit more information about category M you can read these threads:

Do you need a licence to ride a moped
What exactly constitutes a moped

Electric bicycles with a motor that doesn't get faster than 25 km/h are treated like traditional bicycles and require the vignette.
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Old 21.06.2008, 15:33
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Re: Law on electric bikes

Very helpful - thank you. I've tried the 25 kph versions and they're much too slow (the top gear is much lower than with a normal bike for legal reasons), so I'll go for the faster one and get it registered as a moped. As the two different versions look very much the same, it will be interesting to try out in the UK one day, albeit without the incriminating registration plate and off road, of course .
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