Rules for electric bicycles on the road
13 March 2024

The popularity of electric bicycles (e-bikes) has steadily increased in recent years. E-bikes are bicycles equipped with an electric motor that supports or even replaces the rider's pedaling power.

For many people, e-bikes are a promising way to get from A to B in an environmentally friendly and health-conscious way. However, anyone who rides an e-bike in traffic should follow a few rules to protect themselves and other road users.

The main types of e-bikes
E-bikes: are bicycles that work independently of the rider's pedaling power. The motor can have a power of more than 250 watts and drive the bike faster than 25 km/h. Depending on their performance and speed, e-bikes are classified as mopeds, mopeds or motorcycles and must be registered, insured and driven accordingly.

Pedelecs: are bicycles with electric pedal assistance. The power is 250 watts and enables a speed of up to 25 km/h. Registration, insurance and driver's license are not required.

S-Pedelecs: are fast Pedelecs that can travel up to 45 km/h. They are considered mopeds and therefore require registration and insurance. The driver must have a class AM driving license (colloquially: moped driving license) and wear a helmet.

Legal principles and rules of conduct
Since e-bikes have now become very popular, there are a number of legal principles and rules of conduct that you should observe when traveling with an e-bike.

Legal basis:  E-bikes are legally classified as bicycles in Germany. This means they have to follow the same traffic rules as bicycles.

These include, for example:

- The maximum permitted speed is 25 km/h.
- E-bikes are only allowed to ride on cycle paths if these are available.
- If the maximum speed is exceeded, a fine can be imposed.
- E-bikes must be equipped with a lighting system.
- E-bikes must have an insurance license plate.
- Rules of conduct: In addition to the legal basis, there are also some rules of conduct that you should observe when riding an e-bike. These include, for example:

Pay attention to the road traffic regulations: E-bikes are considered motor vehicles and must therefore comply with the same traffic rules as cars and motorcycles. A helmet must be worn on public roads and speed limits must be adhered to. You should only use the sidewalk if necessary. Pay attention to your driving style, especially when cornering and in wet conditions.

Be visible:  E-bikes are often quieter than cars or motorcycles and therefore more difficult to see for other road users. Wear light-colored clothing and use a bright lamp on your e-bike when riding at night.

Drive defensively: Don't drive too fast or too recklessly! Be aware of the dangers on the road and drive accordingly. Avoid risky driving maneuvers and be considerate of other road users.

Take regular breaks: E-biking can be tiring, so it's important to take regular breaks. Dismount and stretch to relax your body.

Maintain your e-bike: Please maintain your e-bike regularly so that it stays in good condition and you can ride safely. Check tire pressure, brakes and lights regularly.

With these tips you can help protect yourself and other road users from injuries.


E-bikes are a comfortable and environmentally friendly way of getting around, but there are legal principles and rules of conduct to protect yourself and others.

Here are some additional tips for safe riding with the e-bike:
- Familiarize yourself with your e-bike before your first ride.
- Practice driving in different traffic situations.
- Pay attention to regular maintenance of your e-bike.
- Have your e-bike checked regularly by a specialist.
- By following these tips, you can minimize the risk of accidents while riding an e-bike.

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