What's the difference between an e-bike, scooter, moped, and motor tricycle?
With the warmer weather upon us and rising gas prices you've probably noticed vehicles on Ontario's roads that are unlike most; they don't appear to be a motorcycle and they certainly aren't a car or truck. So what the heck are they and what's needed to ride them?
Increasingly popular, an e-bike typically looks like a regular bicycle, and are treated in much the same manner as conventional bicycles; they currently do not require licensing, insurance, registration or licence plates. An e-bike is a power-assisted bicycle and its top allowable speed is 32 km/h.
In order to ride an e-bike however, you must:
- Be 16 years of age or older, and
- Wear an approved bicycle or motorcycle helmet.
Scooters, like the popular Vespa, are also known as limited-speed motorcycles (LSM). A scooter's top speed is 70 km per hour.
You may ride a scooter on many roads in Ontario, however to do so you must have:
- The right licence: This means having a motorcycle licence. There is a licence available that allows you to only drive LSMs and mopeds.
- Insurance: Just like any other motorcycle, if you're driving a scooter it must have motorcycle insurance, be registered and plated.
- A helmet: Safety first and always. The driver of a scooter must wear an approved helmet.
A moped, also known as a motor-assisted bike, is basically a bicycle only with a motor. It has pedals that can be used at all times and can reach maximum speeds of up to 50 km/h.
Just like scooter riders, in order to ride on the roads a moped rider must have:
- A restricted class M (motorcycle) licence for LSMs and mopeds
- A valid licence plate and registration
- An approved helmet when riding
A motor trike as it is more commonly called is a three-wheeled motorcycle. The traditional looking motor trike has one wheel in the front and two in the back, although new designs have it reversed.
A motor tricycle can travel anywhere a motorcycle can go, but in order to drive it you must:
- Have a valid unrestricted motorcycle licence
- Register the trike, have it plated and purchase insurance
- Wear a helmet
What'll it be: Two, three or four wheels for you?
If a scooter, motor trike or moped has captured your imagination, you will need insurance. Comparison shop your insurance needs as motorcycle insurance rates can vary considerably. If having four wheels firmly planted on the ground is more your style, comparison shop your auto insurance. It's the only way to know you are getting the best priced insurance available.
Looking for more inforamtion about motorcycles or scooters?