Pedelec and E-Bike: What Is the Difference?

My neighbor talks about his new pedelec, my buddy from an e-bike.Do they end up doing the same thing?

According to the Zweirad-Industrie-Verband, last year around 310,000 pedelecs or e-bikes were sold in Germany.This corresponds to a market share of eight percent.Thus, electric bicycles are already a popular means of transport in private transport.But what is the difference between pedelec and e-bike?

According to the General German Bicycle Club (ADFC), three criteria are decisive for the answer to this question:

  1. What is the power of the built-in electric motor?
    2. Is a pedal movement necessary?
    3. What is the maximum design speed of the vehicle?

If the engine power is a maximum of 250 watts and is supported only up to a speed of 25 km/h, this is referred to as a pedelec (picture left).The term stands for “Pedal Electric Cycle”.These bicycles are frequently equated with e-bikes.

However, to the group of e-bikes (picture below) strictly speaking only the two-wheelers equipped with an electric motor over 250 watts do not necessarily require pedal support or drive faster than 25 km/h.As a rule, they require a license, an insurance license and a driver’s license (driving license).In a recent statement, the Federal Government points out that there is a helmet requirement for these vehicles.Read more about this (points 26 and 29).


Pedelecs are the slowest electric bicycles, which are equated with the bicycle.E-bikes are the faster electric bicycles, which are legally assigned to the small bikes.For more information, see a current ADFC brochure .

However, regardless of the conceptual assignment, I can confirm that driving with electric drive is fun.This applies to electric tricycles as well as electric cars.

The Stiftung Warentest examined twelve bicycles with electric drive.How they cut you off can be seen in this video post from the ZDF-program “Volle Kanne”:

My neighbors and my friends are also thrilled by the new companions and are no longer afraid of mountains!