FAQ Electric Motorcycles

Electric Motorcycles, Scooters and Mopeds

We get asked lots of questions about Electric Motorcycles, Scooters and Mopeds at Saltire Motorcycles. We have created an indepth FAQ below, which we hope answers all of your questions. 

Electric vehicles are categorised by power rating based on Kilowatts (KW), instead of engine size in CC, and by the method that the powered drive is engaged. There are different categories of electric bicycles, mopeds and motorbikes as defined by the European Commission. However, these are mostly only of concern to the manufacturer, and from a UK user’s point of view, the most important thing is how that classification decides which driving licence category (provisional or full) you need to ride them on the public highway.

Put simply, electric motorcycles fall into the same licencing categories as their internal combustion engine (ICE) equivalents. The only real difference is that the power of electric motorcycles is measured as maximum constant power, rather than maximum peak power. The licence classifications are as follows:

  • AM – Mopeds. Continuous power up to 4kW. Max speed 28mph. These are typically regarded as being equivalent to 50cc
  • A1 – Power <= 11kw, Power/Weight <=0.1 kw/kg. These are typically regarded as being equivalent to 125cc
  • A2 – Power <= 35kw, Power/Weight <=0.2 kw/kg
  • A – Power > 35kw, Power/Weight >0.2 kw/kg

Yes. Mopeds can be fitted with “Pizza Box” sized delivery boxes. For longer shifts, the electric bikes can be used in combination with removable batteries and spare chargers to extend the usable range.

The biggest advantage of electric bikes from this perspective is that there is no clutch and direct drive, meaning they are extremely simple to ride. Their twist and go controls are as simple as an automatic petrol-driven scooter. Most have economy and performance modes that manage power output and throttle response to either give you extended range or more immediate power delivery. All the other controls are the same as conventional motorbikes such as indicators, horn, speedometer etc.

One of the advantages of electric mopeds and bikes is that they are significantly quieter than their petrol equivalents but are not totally silent. You will hear the electric motor as you ride. Belt driven bikes also typically make more noise than hub motors.

Yes. All our bikes conform to European standards and will come complete with Certificate of Conformity for your records.

You can ride our AM (50cc) electric moped from age 16 on a provisional licence with CBT. You must be at least 17 years old to ride the A1 category (<=11kw) 125cc equivalent on a provisional licence with CBT. Category A2 and A bikes can be ridden by anyone with the appropriate category of full driving licence. Please see https://www.saltiremotorcycles.com/rider-training-edinburgh/ for details of licence age restrictions.

Yes. Licence categories are the same as for internal combustion engine motorcycles.

Electric mopeds and motorbikes are required to be registered with the DVLA using a V5 document but there Road Tax is free for all vehicles with zero emissions at point of use. Just like their petrol equivalents, number plates will need to displayed, insurance is required, and an MOT will be needed three years after first registration.

Yes. Insurance and a helmet are required (OUR RECOMMENDED EV INSURANCE IS: LEXHAM DIRECT | https://www.lexhaminsurance.co.uk/ )

Compared to a combustion engine motorcycle an electric bike is very efficient as there are:

  • No Oil/oil/fuel filter
  • No Petrol
  • No Coolant
  • No Valves
  • No Spark Plugs
  • No Clutch/transmission/cables
  • No Throttle bodies/Carburettors

to maintain! Therefore, maintenance essentially comes down to consumable items such as tyres and brake pads, bearings & electrical items.

This is a function of the power of the engine, the consumption of the battery and driving style. So depending on battery size, the typical range starts at about 30 miles but can go above 200 miles on the bikes we offer.

This depends on the model, battery size and charge option.

A charge indicator on the Speedometer, mostly shown in % which then can calculate the range in miles or km. If there is an option to change modes (eco/sport etc..) the range will be affected.

This varies dependent on make and model, many have storage compartments (fuel tank turns into a lockable glove box). Some even have more storage where normally an engine would sit. In addition, we can supply an optional secure top box.

Electric motorbikes and mopeds come with a 2 warranty, and batteries are covered for between 3 and 5 years.

We supply a full range of spare parts for electric bikes and scooters, including additional batteries and chargers.

If you have any questions, please contact us