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Imagine you are on your way to work when you glance over and see a cyclist next to you. While this isn’t unusual, something seems different about this rider. All of a sudden it hits you, they aren’t moving the pedals! It may be surprising at first, but this will likely become an increasingly common sight as e-bikes continue to grow in popularity.

What exactly is an e-bike? Well, to put it simply, it’s any bicycle that has an electric motor attached to it. What differentiates them from mopeds is that they still allow the user to pedal the bicycle when they choose to, and they typically don’t exceed 20-25 mph. Their speed and pedaling abilities mean they can be used in most bike lanes, making them a great alternative to cars for zipping around. The engine comes in handy when facing a daunting hill or long open stretches, which can become nuisances when just pedaling. Here are some companies that are leading the charge in the e-bike movement:

1. Riide e-Bike


Riide is a relatively new company looking to change the way urbanites commute. Their sleek, relatively lightweight bicycles will surprise onlookers when they find out they’re electric. They also offer a unique pricing model, where it’s possible to rent a bike on a month-to-month basis instead of buying one outright. Currently Riide is only available in Washington, D.C., and San Francisco, but be on the lookout for this up and comer.

2. Italjet e-Bike


Want to feel like you’re swerving through the streets of Rome, without the trouble of going to the airport? Look no further than the Italjet Ascot. With its leather seat and handlebar tape and cafe racer design, you’ll feel like an old-school movie star in no time. Any increase in hand gestures or pasta consumption is purely coincidental.

3. VoltBike e-Bike


E-bikes are great, but many of the models currently on the market come with high price tags. VoltBike is trying to change that with its bicycle, the Elegant. Modestly priced, the Elegant is a great way for first time buyers to get a feel for an e-bike without spending too much. Good for the environment and the wallet!

4. Rad Power Bikes e-Bike


For the hardcore commuter who needs needs plenty of storage space, the RadWagon by Rad Power Bikes is for you. With a maximum range of about 40 miles per charge, this bike will take you places. Need to make a grocery run after work? Not a problem, with the RadWagon’s massive built in cargo rack, even big trips are a breeze.

5. Gocycle e-Bike


If you still rely on other forms of transportation for part of your commute, don’t feel left out! The G2 by Gocycle is a folding e-bike that’s easy to take with you in the car, train, or bus. Unlike many folding bikes which look clunky and difficult to use, the G2 has a streamlined design that’s both stylish and practical. You’ll be the envy of other commuters with this mean machine!

With millions of people embracing e-bikes in Europe and Asia, the e-bike is here to stay, and it’s only a matter of time until their popularity explodes in America. They combine the environmental and health friendly aspect of unpowered bicycles with the fun and style of mopeds. What’s not to like?

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