As electric bikes gain popularity, it’s essential to look at another electric ride; the e-trike. An electric tricycle works the same way as an e-bike, only with three wheels instead of two.
This offers the rider more stability and is an excellent option for those with poor balance, muscle weakness, or who have never mastered the art of riding a bike. That’s ok, and happily, a wide range of adult-size electric tricycles exist to help riders in these categories enjoy the outdoors. Like an e-bike, the e-trike also comes with a rechargeable battery pack and a small motor for added speed and power. The best electric trikes combine practicality with a fun and safe ride. So how fast can an e-trike go?
The build of an e-trike lends itself well to stability, ease of carrying cargo, and safety. Its stable, squat, large baskets for cargo or groceries can easily fit between the back two wheels. The design of an e-trike is built for practicality and steadiness, not so much for speed. That doesn’t mean you can’t get some speed out of an e-trike, but you’ll be looking at a safer, slower, and better for errands than nimble speed riding.
Moreover, the e-trike is typically built with practicality and comes in fewer body builds. You’ll generally get a beach cruiser-type design, which is meant for lower-speed cruising, as opposed to racing or tackling hiking trails.
The speed of your e-trike will be impacted by terrain, cargo and rider weight, inclines, and how much of the throttle vs. foot power you are using to power your e-trike. With pedal assist and throttle, you can get more life, range, and speed out of your e-trike’s battery pack.
A speed of about 5 miles per hour can be expected if you use only your foot power to move the e-trike. Pedal assist levels 1-2 on an even plane will give you a maximum of about 8 miles per hour. The pedal assist levels 3-4 will get you about 13 miles per hour. The pedal helps level 5 and will contact you about 14-15 miles per hour with normal, easy pedaling.
Using both intense pedaling and throttle power, you can expect to max out at about 20 miles per hour on an e-trike under ideal conditions. That’s a higher end of the speed range, and your e-trike will typically go a bit slower than this.
Again, these speeds are not what you would expect from an e-bike using pedal assist, but then, the design of an e-trike is meant more for stability and safety than for racing. It’s a steady, capable, and practical ride that can allow you to cruise along at reasonable speeds in your neighborhood or while running errands. It won’t generally go faster than 20 miles per hour, even under the best conditions. Still, what it lacks in acceleration, it makes up for in convenience, ease of use, versatility, storage space, and availability to a broader range of riders.