OpenRouteService, the routing application developed by Heidelberg University, has been updated to include e-bikes. The comprehensive routing engine, which uses open-source mapping, has long catered for bikes but now an e-bike option is also included to cater for the particular needs of an electric bike.
So, what's different? Well, the e-bike routing still favours quiet roads with light traffic, and traffic-free paths. But it's less concerned with any hills that might be in the way, since those are less of an issue when you have a motor helping you along. We tried it on a local route, from the centre of Bath to nearby Devizes. The top image is the route chosen by the application for a standard bike: it heads out along the canal towpath and keeps south of Bradford-on-Avon for a nice flat ride: you can see in the gradient bar on the left that the route is predominantly flat: 90% of it, in fact.
Compare that with the e-bike route, which heads straight out of town up Bathwick Hill and then down Brassknocker Hill to meet up with the standard bike route. That knocks 3km off the distance but more than doubles the amount of climbing along the way.
There are lots of options to fine-tune your route: you can opt for a fatser or shorter route, set your fitness level or even specify a maximum gradient for what you're prepared to climb. It's an interesting application, although it doesn't always give us the results we'd expect, or the route we'd choose, in the area we know best. Have a play around and see how it fares for your locality!