New York State Electric Bike Laws

New York State Electric Bike Laws

How does New York State define Electric Bikes?

The state of New York defines an electric bike as a bicycle which is no more than 36" wide and has an electric motor of less than 750w, equipped with fully functional pedals. Electric bikes are classified as:

  • Class 1 bicycle with electric assist: eBikes equipped with a pedal-assist only motor which stops when the bike reaches 20 mph. 
  • Class 2 bicycle with electric assist: Electric bikes equipped with a motor that may be used exclusively to propel the bicycle and stop when the bike reaches the speed of 20 mph.
  • Class 3 bicycle with electric assist: These can be ridden only in cities having a population of one million or more. These are bikes equipped with a motor that provides assistance only when the rider is pedaling and stops when the rider stops pedaling or when the bicycle reaches the speed of 25 mph.

Do you need a license, insurance or registration in New York?

The state of New York does not allow registration of electric bikes.

What are the restrictions on Motor power or throttle in New York?

The motor of an electric bike can't exceed 750w.

Are there any age restrictions to riding an electric bike in New York?

Riders must be at least 16 years old. 

What are the laws around helmets in New York?

Helmets are required for all riders on any motorized device or vehicle.

What are the rules for riding on the road in New York?

Bicycle with electric assist - multiple classes of bicycle with an electric motor and operable pedals. 2 A bicycle with electric assist doesn’t qualify for a registration as a motorcycle, limited use motorcycle, moped or ATV and doesn’t have the same equipment. You can operate an electric scooter or bicycle with electric assist on some streets and highways in New York State: you can operate these devices on highways with a posted speed limit of 30 MPH or less municipalities can further regulate the time, place and manner of operation of these devices you cannot operate these devices on a sidewalk except as authorized by local law or ordinance.

Additional Notes:

  • Each city, town or village may, by local law or ordinance, can further regulate the time, place and manner of the operation of bicycles with electric assist including, but not limited to, maximum speed, requiring the use of protective headgear, and the wearing of readily visible reflective clothing or material by riders.

Disclaimer:

Laws and policies can change at any time rendering the above information outdated and non-applicable. EVELO strongly encourages checking with City, County, State and other local agencies for the most recent laws governing the proper, legal use of electric bicycles in your area.

Sources:

New York Department of Motor Vehicles

The New York State Senate