Electric bikes and mopeds are both motorized vehicles that can be used to get around. The optimal selection relies on factors such as riding location, distance, local regulations, and individual preferences.

What Is A Moped?

A moped is a vehicle with two wheels that incorporates characteristics from both bicycles and motorcycles. Mopeds share some similarities with scooters but have distinct differences.

A typical classic moped has a gas engine with an engine size of less than 50cc. Pedals are commonly used in most models to provide additional propulsion. Mopeds generally have a maximum speed of about 30 mph.

Modern mopeds have variations. Some lack pedals and instead use an electric motor, resembling small motorcycles.

Mopeds offer a convenient motorized transportation option without the need for a license or special insurance. The licensing and registration requirements for mopeds are less stringent than for motorcycles and scooters. In certain jurisdictions, riding a moped does not require a license.


What Is An E-Bike?

An e-bike is a bicycle with a built-in electric motor that assists with pedaling power. It has pedals like regular bikes and is powered by a large battery mounted to the frame.

The motor enables faster speeds than a non-powered bike. It also assists with uphill, headwind, and flat surface riding for a more convenient experience. E-bike motors typically have a maximum speed of 15.5, 20, or 28 mph, depending on the e-bike class and local regulations.

How Do They Differ?

One major distinction between electric bikes and mopeds lies in the type of motors employed. Electric bikes are driven by electric motors, while mopeds typically rely on gas-powered motors. It's worth noting that electric mopeds are also an option.


  • E-bike travel offers numerous benefits compared to mopeds. One major advantage is their enhanced mobility, allowing them to access areas that are inaccessible to mopeds, like bike lanes, sidewalks, and even off-road parks. In densely populated urban areas, despite the lower maximum speed of an e-bike, the ability to bypass sluggish traffic can offer significant benefits. Concerns about bike theft are common, especially in larger cities. Fortunately, e-bikes can be safely stored indoors and are lightweight enough to be carried upstairs.
    Additionally, e-bikes can function as regular bicycles even without battery power. This eliminates the need to search for gas stations and provides an enjoyable way to stay in shape.
  • Mopeds offer the clear advantage of greater speed and distance compared to e-bikes. If you frequently travel long distances or desire the freedom to be without a car or motorcycle, a moped is an excellent choice. However, a downside is that mopeds must follow normal traffic laws, resulting in them getting stuck in traffic along with other vehicles in high traffic areas. Mopeds are compact and offer more convenient parking options than cars, although they are not as easy to park as e-bikes. Parking a moped on the sidewalk may be discouraged in certain areas, and they are not easily brought indoors.


  • Due to their compatibility with bicycle paths and trails, the occurrence of accidents involving e-bikes is highly restricted. Additionally, the maximum allowable speed for these vehicles is 30km/h.
  • Mopeds are often surrounded by traffic, faster vehicles, and other bikes when driven on a normal traffic lane. Traffic jams are common, especially in larger cities. Accidents and fatalities involving moped drivers are extremely high due to the lack of safety measures compared to bigger motorbikes or cars.


    • Owning an e-Bike is an excellent choice if you want to combine your commuting time with your weekly gym session. Studies reveal that riding an e-bike for an hour burns between 300-400 calories. While this is roughly 50% of the calories burned when riding a regular bicycle, it is a significantly healthier option compared to riding a moped, which involves no physical activity. 
    • While a moped doesn't burn many calories, it does burn slightly more calories compared to driving a car. However, if you're seeking a fitness advantage, e-bikes are a much better option.
    • Despite the perception of low maintenance, regular upkeep is necessary for avid cyclists.

      Key items to keep an eye on for replacement are chains, sprockets, brake pads, tubes, and tires. Batteries typically have a lifespan of 200 to 1000 cycles depending on their treatment and quality.

      These items can be replaced easily with a few tools. This is a significant advantage compared to mopeds. By visiting a bike shop, repairs and tune-ups can be obtained when necessary, but it is not always required to take your bike to a pricier mechanic. With some knowledge, you can perform maintenance on your e-bike within the comfort of your own home at any given time.

    • Moped maintenance is similar to car maintenance because of its combustion engine. This requires purchasing engine oil, transmission oil, brakes, air filter, spark plugs, and brake linings.

      Some maintenance tasks may not need to be performed frequently, particularly if your moped is not used extensively.

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    Maintaining a moped yourself is more challenging than an e-bike. It requires additional workspace, and in case of major issues, professional assistance becomes necessary.
      • When it comes to e-bikes, they typically begin at a comparable price to mopeds. On average, a standard e-bike costs approximately $1000 dollars but can exceed several thousand dollars for premium models.

        The price of e-bikes heavily relies on the bike type and its battery technology, which significantly contributes to the overall cost. For instance, mountain e-bikes can exceed $4000 in price, while those used for commuting or riding in urban areas can be found for approximately $1200.

      • Typically, mopeds are less expensive than e-bikes. While there are some models priced as low as $500, a decent moped usually costs around $1000 and can reach as high as $2500 or more.

        Mopeds tend to be cheaper as they have been on the market longer. You can also find great second-hand models. While a new version can be pricier, used mopeds can be as low as $200 in some places.

        When purchasing a used model, it is important to note that the age of the moped may impact the expenses associated with maintenance and repairs for your moped.

        • E-bikes are similar to regular bikes. If you own one, you only need to follow less stringent electrical bicycle laws compared to motorized vehicles. E-bikes allow you to ride on bike lanes and cycle paths without requiring insurance or a driver’s license. Depending on Local Laws, there may be age restrictions for electric bike riders.
        • A moped is treated akin to a car and is limited to car lanes. It cannot venture off-road, sidewalks, or cycling paths. Its purpose is specific to the town center, being ill-suited for uneven roads. In order to operate a moped, it is necessary to fulfill the age requirement in your locality, successfully pass a test, and obtain a driver's license of some kind. Moreover, you and your vehicle will need to be insured against accidents.
        The moped is a popular choice of vehicle for commuters and continues to be the top preference. However, Electric bikes have evolved into advanced vehicles that can be used in cities, parks, and mountainous regions. They are a much greener choice, and they need little maintenance after the initial investment.
          September 28, 2023 — Samuel Combs