E-bikes (electric bicycles) are allowed on Irish roads, subject to conditions:
|Pedal assistance only||The e-bike motor will only work while you turn the pedals. Once you stop turning the pedals, the motor will also stop.|
|No “throttle”||The e-bike must not be fitted with a “throttle”. Control of the power/speed is by pedalling only.|
|Maximum assistance speed of 25 km/h||You can cycle faster than 25 km/h, but the motor won’t assist you above this speed|
|Max continuous motor power of 250 W||Some e-bikes with higher than 250 W ratings are available, however these are not legal on Irish roads|
E-bikes that meet the above conditions are treated the same as ordinary bicycle under the law. This means:
- Insurance and road tax are not required
- You can use cycle lanes
- Follow the rules of the road as they apply to bicycles
All e-bikes in stock at Donegal E-bikes meet the conditions to be treated as ordinary bicycles under the law
What about e-bikes that don’t meet the rules?
E-bikes that break one of the above rules (e.g. they provide assistance above 25 km/h) are classed as mechanically propelled vehicles (MPVs) – like a moped. So you would need registration, motor tax, and insurance to cycle one on the road.
On the other hand, you’re free to cycle any e-bike on private land without registration.
Conclusion – E-bike Legality Ireland
All e-bikes in stock at Donegal E-Bikes are legal to cycle on Irish roads. They are governed by the same rules as ordinary bicycles.
Rules on e-bikes are generally the same across the EU. So feel free to take your e-bike with you when visiting other EU countries.
UK rules on e-bikes are also a lot like the EU rules, but with a minimum age requirement of 14 years old.
Just like ordinary bikes, you’re not legally required to wear a helmet while cycling an ebike in Ireland
Yes, if a cycle lane is provided, you are legally obliged to use it while cycling your ebike.
While insurance is not legally required, you can still choose to get insurance if you want the added peace of mind.
Insurance for e-bikes is relatively inexpensive
Citizens Information has more information on the rule of the road for cyclists (including those using e-bikes).
Dominic maintains the Donegal Ebikes website. He enjoys mountain biking, and previously worked as a bicycle mechanic for Ireland by Bike.