Little research has been conducted on e-bikes within North America, especially on the individuals who have purchased e-bikes. The first-known U.S. nationwide e-bike owner survey was conducted by LEVER researcher Macarthur (PSU) in 2013. That study was updated by another nationwide survey in 2018 by LEVER researchers Macarthur (PSU) and Cherry (UTK). Analysis of the survey results indicates that there has been little change in the primary reasons individuals are motivated to purchase an e-bike, and they tend to be related to various barriers which deter individuals from riding a standard bicycle; reducing physical exertion, challenging topography, and replacing car trips continue to reign as a few of the most important reasons for buying an e-bike. Importantly, the mode-substitution work from 2018 found that most e-bike trips substitute motorized modes, providing support to the position that e-bikes reduce car-based impacts. Both surveys were funded by People for Bikes and the Transportation Research and Education Center.
A North American Survey of Electric Bicycle Owners