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Electric Bike That Charges as You Pedal – Things to Know

Written by Gary Johnson / Fact checked by Henry Speciale

electric bike that charges as you pedal

If you’re a biker, then you probably know that an electric bike that charges as you pedal is a dream come true! But do we have that kind of technology and is it even possible?

The quick answer to the question is: yes! There are certain models of electric bikes that have the capacity to self-charge. These self-charging e-bikes operate using regenerative braking.

If this sounds interesting to you just continue on reading to know more.

What is a Self Charging E-bike? How Does It Work?


First, we need to know what makes self-charging electric bikes possible. The answers lie in a relatively new technology: regenerative braking. 

  • Regenerative braking is a mechanism that works by storing and converting kinetic energy into electrical energy. The energy is stored back into the battery and gives power to the motor to run itself.

The motor itself can generate electricity, which then makes the concept of recharging while riding possible. That’s how we have a self-charging e-bike.

One of the unique qualities of a self-charging electric bike is that it makes use of an uncommon kind of motor called a Direct Drive Hub Motor.

A direct drive motor does not use any gears, and it operates with the use of a stator. A stator acts as an electromagnet that is able to attract current. It both repels and attracts magnets which become the alternative for gearing.

However, it may be worth noting that electric bikes with regenerative braking limit their charging capabilities to a small extent. It only recharges 5% to 10% of an e-bike’s charging level. 

Furthermore, many bikes are marketed as self-charging, but their return-power rate is too low, therefore users rarely use this function to recharge their e-bike. 

The Characteristics of a Self Charging Electric Bicycle


1. Battery types are removable

One of the best qualities of a rechargeable e-bike is that all battery types are removable. It’s chargeable whether indoors or outdoors. Furthermore, the lithium battery allows you to charge it even if it still hasn’t reached dead power.

2. Convenient for travel.

Other variations of a pedal charging electric bike can be folded, making them more compact and convenient for travel. Depending on the type you prefer, some are aluminum-framed, titanium-framed, and can weigh about 12 kg to 13.5 kg.

3. Mediocre level of speed

The average speed of an electric bike can go as high as 20mph. It is known to be the ideal speed of an e-bike. For a pedal-powered electric bike, some have a top speed of 15mph. 

On the other hand, there are also those who offer a slight increase of speed performance. Some models can produce a speed of 25 kmph or 15.5mph but are able to reach about 30kmph or 18.6mph when using pedal assist mode.

4. Expensive price as compared to the usual e-bikes

Since a rechargeable electric bike is essentially more convenient, slick, and all the more functional, it’s only fair to expect that their prices aren’t so ordinary compared to the typical e-bikes.

The cheapest one you can find has a price point of over $500. Some simple models go as high as $1000. Whereas, the others can be range from $2,000 and up.

How Do Electric Bicycles Usually Charge?

Normally, you can change electric bicycles or electric scooters using a charger. Just plug it in an outlet (typically 110V) and wait until the vehicle fully charges. 

Depending on the models, it can take 3.5 to more than 6 hours for an electric bike to complete charging.

A self-charging bicycle can come in two variations–one that charges when you pedal and one that charges when you push the brakes.

An electric bike charges while pedaling, and in the process, the use of a USB connection paves the way for this to happen. The USB connection allows the electricity to be moved on the way to the e-bike’s battery when a pedaling motion powers up the motor.

The electric bike with pedal generator comes with a technology called “hubs,” which uses hub ports. When you find hub ports in public places, all you have to do is to plug your e-bike into these hubs. Then, begin to pedal or brake, and simply wait until your battery is boosted enough.

Frequently Asked Questions


Do any electric bikes charge when you pedal?

While it may not be very common yet, yes, electric bikes that charge when you pedal do exist. However, since this is a new technology, many older models of e-bikes do not have this special feature. If you really want an e-bike like this, you’ll have to go for the latest versions.

What are the cons of a self-charging e-bike?

One of the few disadvantages of a self-generating electric bicycle is that the charging process can be slow. Another disadvantage is that battery depletion is a big tendency, especially when there are a lot of e-bikes simultaneously being charged in one hub port.

This can happen because the overloaded charging of e-bikes in the port may cause a decelerated flow of electricity. However, there is always a simple solution to this–to avoid charging too many e-bikes in one hub port all at once.

Is it OK to charge the e-bike battery everyday?

It’s important that lithium batteries remain alive and charged. With that, yes, it is actually ideal for recharging the battery after a ride. This preps your electric bike to always be ready when you want to use it.

Should I let my e-bike battery cool down before charging?

Yes. Remember that right after riding your e-bike a 30-minute interval must be followed first before you plug it in for its daily recharge. This helps cool down the battery first, ensuring a safe charging process.


An electric bike that charges as you pedal is slowly and surely emerging as the newest innovative invention. As of now, it isn’t the most used e-bike just yet but with its convenience plus the capabilities it features, it’s only a matter of time until it takes over the e-bike community!

So before you say goodbye to your e-bike charging kit and before these types of e-bike rage with popularity, it’s better you know all about it.

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