Am I able to get insurance for my electric bicycle with Yellow Jersey, or is it considered an electric motorcycle?
In order to insure with Yellow Jersey, your e-bike must be “powered by human pedalling and/or battery” and not be “subject to the requirements of the Road Traffic Act”. But what does this actually mean?
Under UK law, any vehicle powered by a motor is considered a “motor vehicle” and must be registered with the DVLA, insured, and any required tax paid before it can be driven on the road. Because they pose little risk to the public, electric bikes are exempt from this requirement, so long as they have their power and speed limited.
To be considered an “electric bicycle”, an e-bike must be fitted with a motor that only assists while pedalling, the assistance must be restricted to 15.5 mph, and the motor may only deliver a peak power output of 250 watts.
What is the difference between the motor Watts and battery Watt-hour measurements on my electric bicycle?
We regularly speak to customers who have checked the specifications for their electric bicycles, and noticed the battery has a Watt-hour (or Wh) of more than 250. This does not mean that their electric bicycle is too powerful to be insured with us.
The Battery Watt-hour (sometimes written Wh) is a measure of how much energy the battery can store. The larger the number, the longer you can cycle before needing to recharge. There is no legal limit on the size of the battery, and this number does not indicate how powerful or fast your electric bicycle is.
The motor’s peak power output is measured in Watts (W) and this is the measurement that needs to be limited to 250W.
The vast majority of electric bikes sold in the UK will meet these requirements. If you are buying in-store, the staff will be able to confirm this for you. If you are buying online, the technical specifications for the bike should be available on the webpage for you to see.
There are sellers, particularly on websites such as eBay and Aliexpress, advertising “e-bikes” with much higher top speeds and more powerful motors than allowed for an electric bicycle. Under UK law, these are considered electric motorcycles or mopeds, and cannot be insured with us.
You can get an online electric bicycle insurance quote with Yellow Jersey in less than a minute. All we need is the value of your bikes, and there is no need to give us your personal details until you are ready to purchase.