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Bluetooth could help police spot e-bikes hacked for higher speeds

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Richard Peace's picture

Richard Peace

Richard Peace took to full-time outdoor writing/photojournalism after stints in an office and as an English teacher abroad. His cycling route guide books include the best-selling Ultimate C2C Guide and the Ultimate UK Cycle Route Planner plus Electric Bicycles. He has written for various media about many aspects of cycling


3 months 2 weeks ago

Ah yeah - the same country that gave us VW's Dieselgate and turned a blind eye to their assorted Car Giants' dirty diesel "open secret" until it was finally exposed by silence-breaking American investigators in America. The usual risible double standards - if it's electric, has 2 wheels not 4 and threatens the car-addicted  status quo by moving at more than 25km/h(as ebikes legally do in the US) then the regulators' and media's knives are out 24/7/365.

Paul G

3 months 2 weeks ago

I don't have a strong view, but I can see a case for increasing the limit to 20mph.  If we are (let's hope, heh!) increasingly moving to 20mph as the default speed limit, there is certainly an argument for setting the limit so e-bikes can keep up with the traffic.  Conversely, though, it might be more problematic in segregated infrastructure.

3 months 2 weeks ago

Maybe the top assist speed could randomly vary from day to day, anywhere from 12 to 19 MPH. The display could show that the motor is "feeling tired."

3 months 2 weeks ago

Now do cars.

3 months 2 weeks ago

Emphatically no to this.  Firstly bluetooth is an encrypted protocol - precisely to stop it being used to spy on people.

Secondly since Germany is one of the most privacy protecting and aware countries in the world anyone proposing this needs a slap be told to sit down and shut up.


He may understand motors - he doesnt have 2 hapennies to rub together on privacy.

3 months 2 weeks ago

"... is the current 15.5mph EU/UK assist limit too low for practical purposes when many non-electric bikes travel at more than this speed anyway."

Emphatically, no.

EAPCs fall under the same legislative framework as ordinary cycles. That relies on them fitting largely within the same performance envelope. To remain credible the bell curve of speed distribution for EAPCs and ordinary cycles has to overlap to a large degree.

As to the point that "many" non-electric bikes travel in excess of 15.5mph, the same performance is of course available on EAPCs, they are not speed limited. But the electric assistance is only designed to place the EAPC rider in the middle of the pack. If it placed them at the upper margins of performance then there would be a marked divergence between the two averages and the whole rationale for treating them the same in legislation is lost.