There is a three-class system to categorize electric bicycles and properly regulate them based on their maximum assisted speed. The three class system outlines the following categories of electric bicycles:
Class 1 e-bike
A bike equipped with a motor that provides assistance only when the rider is pedalling (pedal assist) and ceases to provide assistance when the bike reaches 32 km/h (20 miles per hour) and has a maximum continuous wattage output of 500 watts.
Class 2 e-bike
A bike with a motor that may be used exclusively to propel the bicycle, and that is not capable of providing assistance when the bicycle reaches the speed of 32 km/h (20 miles per hour.)
Class 3 e-bike
A bike equipped with a motor that provides assistance only when the rider is pedaling, and that ceases to provide assistance when the bicycle reaches the speed of 45 km/h (28 miles per hour), and is equipped with a speedometer.
Class 1 and 2 electric bicycles are generally permitted to travel anywhere traditional bikes are permitted, as the maximum assisted speed of these devices is closely aligned with speeds traveled by traditional bicycles.
Class 3 electric bicycles are generally permitted on streets and roadways where traditional bicycles are permitted, including bicycle lanes, but would be restricted from slower speed areas such as multi-use paths.