A new report predicts that The next decade will be defined by a battery-powered transportation revolution, with e-bikes becoming The best-selling electric vehicles of The decade, The Verge reported. For years, e-bike sales have been poor in most countries/regions. From 2006 to 2012, e-bikes accounted for less than 1% of all annual bike sales. In 2013, only 1.8 million e-bikes were sold in Europe as a whole, while customers in the United States bought 185,000.
But that is starting to change, thanks to improvements in lithium-ion battery technology, price, and power, as well as a shift in cities from gasoline-powered cars to zero-emission vehicles. Now analysts say they expect e-bike sales to grow at an alarming rate in the next few years.
Deloitte released its annual technology, media, and telecommunications forecasts last week. Deloitte said it expects 130m e-bikes to be sold in us between 2020 and 2023. "By the end of next year, there will easily be more e-bikes on the road than other electric vehicles," it added.
If you think that e-bike sales will reach 40 million a year by 2023, and then you look at the penetration of electric cars, it's an easy prediction to make. By the end of 2018, there were more than 5.1 million electric vehicles on the road. According to the international energy agency's global electric vehicle outlook 2019, only 12 million electric vehicles are expected to be sold by 2025.
The surge in sales seems to herald a big shift in the way people travel. Deloitte predicts that the proportion of people who cycle to work will rise by one percentage point from 2019 to 2022. It may not seem like much on the surface, but with a low base, the difference between the two would be striking. Adding tens of billions of bike rides a year means fewer car trips and lower emissions, with spillover effects on traffic congestion and urban air quality.
Jeff Loucks, executive director of Deloitte's technology, media, and telecommunications center, said e-bike sales will not grow on average across the United States. He predicts that cities will have the highest adoption rates. "We're seeing more and more people moving into the urban core of the country," Loucks said. If some of them are not cycling, it will put a huge burden on the roads and the public transport system."
Deloitte is not alone in predicting the e-bike revolution. Ryan Citron, an analyst with Guidehouse (formerly Navigant), has forecast that 113 million e-bikes will be sold between 2020 and 2023. His Numbers are slightly below those of Deloitte, but he still expects a surge in sales. "Yes, e-bikes are the best-selling electric vehicles on the planet!" Citron added in an email to The Verge.
Sales of e-bikes have been growing steadily for years, but they still make up only a small part of the overall bike market in the United States. According to market research firm NPD Group, e-bike sales grew a staggering 91 percent from 2016 to 2017, then another 72 percent from 2017 to 2018, to a staggering $143.4 million. Sales of e-bikes in the United States have increased more than eightfold since 2014.
But Matt Powell of NPD thinks Deloitte and others may push e-bike sales slightly higher. Powell said Deloitte's forecast "seems pretty high" because his firm is only predicting 100,000 e-bikes will be sold in the United States by 2020. He also said he disagrees with the idea that e-bikes will outsell electric cars in the next few years. NPD still acknowledges that the fastest-growing segment of the bike market is electric bikes.