E-bike safety is all of the sudden in the news. We are getting lots of questions about it. It's an important topic not just for the obvious reasons but also because it marks a key moment in the history of our industry where e-mobility has gone mainstream but with more loosness and fly-by-nightism than would be ideal.
We want to give you some information and resources so that you are informed, can inform others and feel great about your ebike.
Most important thing to know is that your ebike from The New Wheel is a quality vehicle from high quality brands who utilize drive systems from the top manufacturers in the industry. We think of ourselves as the first customer when choosing a brand to partner with and so each brand must meet our high standards before we choose to begin selling them. We know that we will be seeing everything we sell for a very long time and so we take this very seriously.
If you own a bike from us with a Bosch motor system it meets the most stringent safety standard which is UL 2849, a complete system certification. To read all about UL testing standards, see this see this great article here by Tern.
While UL 2849 is the gold standard, brands that do not use the Bosch system are not currently UL 2849 certified but every brand we carry has UL certified chargers. In addition, all brands meet CE testing standards which are a primary standard in Europe.
We have reached out to each brand independently and each is working on full UL certification currently in light of the focus on this, especially as New York City has begun to disallow the sale of all ebikes that are not UL 2849 certified.
The last point is that in all the discussion of battery safety there is a whole other topic that gets missed which is the safety of the complete bicycle: the brakes, frame, and components. Day to day this is just as important but testing standards are not what they are for electronics. But that is changing. The EFBE Tri-Test for cargo has become the standard for cargo bikes and Riese & Müller, Benno and Tern bikes meet these standards along with UL 2849. This is particularly important because of the precious cargo you will be carrying on these family bikes!
We are thankful that this has become an important topic and regulatory action is on the horizon as the ebike wild-west is not good for us, for you or for the industry. We will continue to post on this topic as we receive new information so stay tuned!