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Electric Bicycle Terms

f you will ever come across an electric bicycle term which you don’t recognize, you will probably find it in this page. The terms are organized in an alphabetical order.

The aim of this page is not to give a full and detailed explanation on every term but instead giving just a short and to the point description. If you want to find out more, other relevant pages in this website have much broader explanations.

# A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z


2WD - Two wheel drive



A - Amperes, measurement of the electric current

AC - Alternating current.

Ah  - Amp hours.

AGM - Absorbed glass mat.

ATB - All terrain bicycle

AWD - All wheel drive



BEV - Battery electric vehicles

Bikeways - A bicycle lane or path

BL motor - Brushless DC motor- synchronous electric motors powered by direct-current (DC) electricity and having electronic commutation systems

BLDC motor - Brushless DC motor - synchronous electric motors powered by direct-current (DC) electricity and having electronic commutation systems

BMS - Battery Management System.

Brush DC - An internally commutated electric motor designed to be run from a DC power source.



C -

Carbon Zinc -

Chain Drive - A transmission system in which power is transferred to the wheels by means of a chain

Continuous Power - The ability of the motor to output its power continuously for a certain period of time



DC - Direct current.

Deep Cycle - A rechargeable battery that was fully discharged.

Dicycle - Two closely-spaced unaxial drive wheels side-by-side at the centre-point of a vehicle.

Discharge Rate - The decreasing rate of the battery’s amp-hour.

DIY - Do it yourself.

DOD - Depth of discharge.



E2WV - Electric two wheel vehicles

EBMX - Electric bicycle motocross

EC motors - Electronically commutated motors

ECM - Electronically commutated motors

EV - Electric vehicle

E-Bike - Stand for Electric Bicycle. Usually means that motor power is independent of pedaling, usually used with a twistgrip throttle.

E-Ped - Stands for electric bicycle

Electrathon - Three or four wheels electric vehicle with no pedals.

Eve Belt -

Energy Capacity -

Energy Density -

Efficiency -

EMC - Electro magnetic compatibility.

EMF Back Voltage -

EPAC - Electrically pedal assisted cycle.

EVB - Electric vehicle battery.



FWD - Front wheel drive.

Fly Wheel - Rotating wheel has a significant moment of inertia which can be used as a storage device for rotational energy.

Fuel Cell - Generation of electric power by direct chemical conversion of fuel.

Freewheel -

Friction Drive -



Gas Zinc -

Gears Ratio -

Gearing -

GEL Cell - Sealed lead acid battery with gelled acid electrolyte.



Hub Motor -  

HPV - Human Powered Vehicle

Hp - Horsepower. 1 Hp = between 735.5 to 750 Watts

Hybrid - This can be a confusing term because it is used to refer to different cases. Usually, it means one of the following three explanations 1. Combination of a fuel engine with an electric engine. 2. Combination of a mountain bicycle with a road bicycle. 3. Combination of an engine with human power.



IBS - Integrates bottom bracket system.

ICE - Internal combustion engine.

Induction Motor -

IMT - Intermediate means of transport.

INM - International non-motorized.

Instantaneous Power -



J-Belt -



KMS - An improper symbol for kilometres, which should be "km".     



La - Lead acid battery.     

LDV - Light duty vehicle.

LEV - Light electric vehicle.     

Li-Ion - Lithium Ion battery.

LiFePO4 - Lithium phosphate battery.

Life Cycle - Total cost of ownership the electric bicycle over it’s complete lifetime.

LSM - Limited speed motorcycle.

LSV - Low Speed passenger vehicle.

LPA - Light pedal assistance.



MBB - Motorized bottom bracket.

MEM - Micro electro mechanical.

Moped - Low-powered motorcycle that can be also equipped with pedals.

MVSR - Motor vehicle safety regulations.

MOT - Ministry of Transport.

Multiphase Motor -

MTB - Mountain bicycle.



N.m -

NiH - Nickel hydrogen battery.

NiCd - Nickel cadmium battery.

NiMH - Nickel metal hydride battery.

NiZn - Nickel zinc battery.



Ohms - Measure of electrical resistance.



PA - Power assist.

PABs - Power assisted bicycles.

PAS - Pedal assist.

PbA - Lead acid battery.

Peak Power - The capability of the motor to produce maximum power with maximum effort for a short period of time without overheating.

Pedelec - Motor power available to the bicycle only when you pedal.

PET - Pedal electric tricycle.

PINO - Pedals In Name Only.

PMDC - Permanent magnet direct current.

PWM - Pulse width modulation.

Power - Equals volts times amps. Measured in watts.

Power Density - Power capacity of a battery in relation to it’s weight.

Power On Demand - Electric bicycle that not require pedaling.

PSI - Pounds per square inch.





R/Min - Round per minute.

Recumbent - A bicycle that place the rider in a laid-back reclining position.

ReGen - A method for converting part of the braking energy into a useful form of energy instead of dissipating it as heat.

Regenerative Braking - A method for converting part of the braking energy into a useful form of energy instead of dissipating it as heat.

Recoverable Energy - A method for converting part of the braking energy into a useful form of energy instead of dissipating it as heat.

RMB - Rack mounted battery.

RMS - Root mean square.

RPM - Revolutions per minute.

RWD - Rear wheel drive.  



SCiB - Super charge ion battery.

SBV - Self balancing vehicle.

Scooter -


Self Discharge - Reduction of the battery stored charge in an idle state.

Solar - Photovoltaic cells to charge a battery or power an electric motor.

SLA - Sealed lead acid battery.

Step Through

Stirling - A heat engine that operates by cyclic compression and expansion of air or other gas.

Storage Battery -

Super Capacitor -

Synchronous Motor -

Specific Power - Power capacity of a battery in relation to its weight.



Three Phases Charging -

Tire Friction -

Traction Battery - A battery designed to give power over long periods of time. There fore, it has high Ah capacity and usually deep charge characteristics.

Traction Motor - A motor that provide a big rotational torque to the bicycle. Usually used to with heavy work loads.

Torque - The tendency of a force to rotate an object about an axis.

Turn-key - An e-bike kit which is sold in a read-to-use condition.



Ultra Capacitor -



V - Volts, measurement of the electric potential.

VOM -Volt Ohm Meter. An equipment for electrical measurements.

Voltage Reduction -

VRLA - Valve regulated lead acid.



Worm Gear Reduction -

W - Watts, measurement of the power.

Wh - Watt-hour, measurement of the total energy of the battery.

WOT - Wide open throttle.








Zinc Air -

ZEV - Zero emission vehicle.


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