10 Best Commuter Bikes: Reviews and Buying Guide

The problem is that not everyone can have a bicycle at home, especially if you live in the city and your apartment has space problems. Precisely for that reason, the folding bicycles are more and more fashionable, because they give you all the advantages but they solve one of the great disadvantages: where do I put that junk?

As it fits in small spaces, you save parking in the street (think that the thefts of bikes and even loose parts! Are common, even if you use a padlock and chain).

In addition, to be able to fold it, it facilitates you to use several means of transport. For example, using the Cercanías to get closer to the center and keep pedaling until you reach your final destination. Most public transports admit folding bicycles without putting problems, whereas if you take a normal bike you may have to negotiate or wait if you travel by bus or subway at rush hour. So if daily cycling is your thing, look kindly at a folding bike. Surely you can get a lot out of it.

Top 10 Commuter Bikes

Now that little by little the good weather is coming up and the hours of the sun are getting longer, you want to do more outdoor activities and cycling is always a good option. If we also want to go to work in this means of transport, but without supposing to arrive sweating to get into the shower, the electric bicycle is a good option to combine exercise and transport.

It is also to practice group sports even if we are not as fit as the rest. It is no longer unusual to see cyclists who go out to ride where one of them, who can train less during the week, has an electric bike. This helps you keep the rhythm of the group without burdening you and the others have to be waiting.

Where is the engine located?

Finally, an interesting question is where the engine is located. There are usually two clear tendencies, in the axis or in the wheel. It is a question of efficiency and sensations. With the engine on the axle, the usual pedaling of a bicycle feels more. It is the most appropriate when we talk about sports with the bike, for MTB or even on the road. In addition, by having a torque movement sensor, on the shaft itself when the pedal is pushed, the electric motor starts running and the bike literally goes off.

In the case of the wheel motor, a motion sensor is included, so it is necessary to give a half or three-quarters of a turn to come into play. For more urban use, they usually go in the rear wheel, although it depends on the model, since some place it in the front to achieve double traction, that of the front wheel by the engine and the rear by the pedal.

The legislation of the electric bike

The electric bicycle will be affected by the same rules as the rest of the bikes. That is, in the city the use of the helmet is not mandatory, not soon interurban roads and road. They can not circulate on the sidewalks, unless they are specially indicated for it, and they have to circulate along the road like the rest of the vehicles.

Neither do you need a driver’s license, as would be the case with a moped? But you do need to know the traffic code, know the road signs and respect them. The bicycle must have red white and red front light whenever it circulates in conditions of reduced luminosity or at night.

It is not obligatory to have a third party damage insurance, nor does it have to pay road tax to vehicles with mechanical traction, since they are not homologous to them. Of course, in the event of an accident if we do not have such insurance we will have to take care of the damage caused to a vehicle or a pedestrian, as the case may be, by our own means.

The assistance to the pedaling

Up to here, the regulations are more or less common to any bicycle. In the case of electrics, the specific one that affects the electric motor and the limitations imposed by pedaling assistance must be added.

The bicycles must be approved by the Ministry of Industry, in accordance with standard UNE-EN 15194: 2009. In case of having an accelerator similar to that of a motorbike, that allows starting the march without giving pedals, they will be considered mopeds. The same happens if your engine exceeds 250W or does not stop pedaling assistance when reaching 25 km / h. In this case, it is necessary to register the vehicle, in addition to having insurance and a driver’s license is required.

Types of electric bicycle batteries and autonomy

As with all electric vehicles, batteries play a very important role when it comes to choosing. For starters, we would have to see if we look for a bicycle with removable batteries or that are integrated into the frame. The main advantage of the first is that we can take them with us if we park the bike on the street and recharge them at work or at home more comfortable than having to climb the bike to our home.

If we prefer that they are integrated into the painting, aesthetically they are more concealed. It would be the closest option to a more conventional, regardless of the chosen type, either a folding, an urban or mountain bike. Practically we will not notice the difference, beyond a greater weight and the help selector that we want to apply.

When choosing, it is essential to look at the recharge cycles allowed by the battery and the ease of its replacement in the future. Especially if we plan on doing many kilometers with this car, as in the case of commuting to work, the more recharge cycles endurance is better.

Finally, the autonomy will be linked to its energy storage capacity. The most efficient batteries are usually those of lithium ion, while the most economical are usually lead, also heavier. A larger storage capacity allows more autonomy, although we must take into account that lithium is more efficient.

The autonomy that we achieve will also depend on the weight of the cyclist and the terrain to be covered. The same performance will not achieve someone who weighs 90 kilos and has to climb hills that a cyclist who weighs 75 and takes a flat course. The normal thing is that they allow realizing routes between 50 and 60 kilometers with assistance to the pedaling without problems. It will also vary with the amount of help it gives us since the electric bike allows us to regulate how much we want the electric motor to push.

 

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