(415) 567-3300
Servicing Clients Throughout The San Francisco Bay Area

Advanced Purchase Recommended for Tours!


get info & book at zerve
Or call Zerve at (800) 979-3370

History of Electric Bicycles

An electric bicycle is a bike with an electric motor attached to the rear of a bike that assists the rider while they are pedaling. This means that a rider doesn't have to pedal nearly as hard, especially up hills and other difficult areas. Some ebikes even include throttles, allowing you to ride without even pumping the pedals.

The electric bike may seem like a new technology, but in fact, it is nearly 120 years old. Some patents for the electric bike were publish in the late 1800s, dating this technology back further than many assume. The technological improvements on the electric bicycle have been vast, making it an extremely interesting piece of transportation history. Around 1870, two inventors created what is believed to be a predecessor for the electric bike. This motorized bicycle used a steam engine and an internal combustion engine.

At the end of 1895, one of the first patents for an electric bike was issued to Ogden Bolton Jr. His patent was mostly centered on an improvement for the bike, rather than a unique invention, so it is not believed to be his original idea. Shortly after, Hosea W. Libbey invented an ebike that used two motors and two batteries. Nearly 50 years later, Jesse D. Tucker got a patent for a motor that used internal gearing and offered the ability to freewheel. This mean the rider could choose whether or not to use the pedals in combination with the electric motor.

The Ebike Today

The history of electric bikes may date over a hundred years, but we have not given up on the technology. Inventors continue to develop new patents for the electric bike, improving on the original idea more and more. There are millions of electric bicycles sold in the USA and the numbers only continue to grow.

Some of the latest inventions that have improved the technology include:

  • Torque sensors
  • Power controls
  • Advanced batteries
  • Better hub motors

More consumers are starting to realize the great benefits of the electric bike and the ease of transport that it brings. With energy saving abilities, the ebike will continue to grow in popularity over the years.

If you have questions about electric bicycles or would like to find out more about our products, please feel free to contact us at (415) 567-3300 today.

Request Information

Why Choose Us?

  • Award Won from Mayor and San Francisco
  • Owner has Electronics Background
  • Central Historic Fillmore District Location
  • Easy Proximity to Golden Gate Park, Ocean Beach, and Other Tourist Attractions
  • Overnight bike rental for the purpose of evaluation of your choice before you buy - get 1/2 the rental fee applied to your purchase.
  • We have been selling ebikes since 2002 and have been operating a retail location since 2005.
©2017 All Rights Reserved.