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E-Bike Statistics: How Popular Are Electric Bikes In The UK In 2021?

Electric Bikes -  or E-Bikes for short - have been rapidly increasing in popularity over the last few years, with UK sales increasing by 60% since March 2020. Their demand is predicted to continue on its upward spiral over the years to come, as E-Bikes become more widely available and awareness of their benefits increases. That’s why we decided to gear into all of the latest E-Bike statistics, including how popular electric bikes are in 2021 and how many more people would cycle if they had an e-bike.

Electric Bike Statistics: The Short Version

  • 1 in 20 people in the UK own an E-Bike 
  • Nearly 40% of people in the UK say they’d cycle more if they had an E-Bike.
  • In Europe, by 2030, there is projected to be 30 million bike sales per year with around half of those being Electric Bikes.
  • The search term ‘Electric Bike’ is searched over 2.4 million times a year in the UK.

Attitudes Towards E-Bikes in the UK in 2021

The past year has seen a huge rise in the number of E-Bikes on our roads and streets. But what does the general public think about the recent e-bike surge? To find out, we surveyed 2,000 UK adults using Censuswide in June 2021 to find out what people really think about the recent E-Bike boom. 

Our survey revealed that: 

  • Almost 4 in every 10 people in the UK (38.88%) would cycle more if they had an electric bike
  • More 35-44 year olds in the UK say they’d cycle significantly more if they had an E-Bike than all other age groups 
  • Some people appear to much prefer traditional bikes, though, as 1 in 10 say they’d actually cycle less if they had an electric bike (10.2%)
cycle more on an ebike chart

Percentage of people who say they’d cycle ‘significantly more’ if they had an e-Bike, by age


How Popular are Electric Bikes in the UK?

In the UK, the search term “Electric Bike” is searched 202,000 times on average per month which is the equivalent of over 2.4 million searches per year in the UK alone.

As you can see from the chart, the number of searches for the term “Electric Bike” skyrocketed in the months that followed the announcement of the Coronavirus lockdown, with a staggering peak of 450,000 searches in May 2020.

ebike search peak

Number of searches for the term “Electric Bike” each month for the past 2 years in the UK. Figures extracted from the search analysis tool KWFinder.

But how significant is this peak? 

Well, to put it into context, the chart below shows online interest in the term ‘Electric bike’ from 2004-2021:

ebike search trend

Google Trends data for the search term “Electric Bike” since 2004 in the UK.

As you can see, online interest in e-bikes has been increasing exponentially over the last 17 years, with the most recent increases accelerating at a much faster pace.


How Many Calories Can You Burn on an E-Bike vs Normal Bike?

There are so many health benefits of cycling, one of which being calorie burn! 1 hour of steady cycling burns around 500 calories, which is great for those looking to keep fit, lose weight or increase their aerobic fitness levels. Research has found that: 

  • 1 hour of cycling a normal bike burns an average of 500 calories
  • 1 hour of cycling an e-bike burns an average of 390 calories 

As you can see, riding an e-bike instead of a normal bike can still provide you with a great calorie burn!


Which Parts of the UK Are Most Keen to Hop on an E-Bike?

To discover which parts of the UK  are most interested in electric bikes, we analysed Google search data obtained from the tool Keyword Finder to discover which areas had the highest search volumes over the last 12 months for the term ‘electric bikes’.

Rank

Town/City

Average monthly searches for ‘electric bikes’ 

1.

Birkenhead

9.05187164

2.

Walsall

7.920900251

3.

Liverpool

6.64520889

4.

Bedford

5.997129945

5.

Bury

5.728518057

6.

St Helens

5.612259458

7.

Wigan

5.504133717

8.

Dudley

5.305790386

9.

Stockport

5.103228463

10.

Rochdale

5.0924991

11.

Bristol

4.850618281

12.

Doncaster

4.707533766

13.

Mansfield

4.474110619

14.

Bournemouth

4.458337344

15.

Barnsley

4.447858962

Top 15 towns and cities in the UK searching for ‘electric bikes’ the most based on searches per 1,000 people.

Our analysis found that: 

  • A higher proportion of people in Birkenhead search for ‘electric bikes’ than any other part of the UK, with 9 in every 1,000 people searching for the term between 2020 and 2021.

  • This was then followed by Walsall, Liverpool and Bedford, as more than 5 in every 1,000 people in these areas searched for the term ‘electric bikes’ over the last 12 months.
  • Interestingly, 9 out of the 15 towns and cities searching for electric bikes the most are in the North West of England.



Methodology: To gather this data we obtained average monthly search volumes from Keyword Finder alongside population data from the following sources: Nomis - Office of National Statistics 2019 data for England and Wales, NISRA 2011 Census data for Northern Ireland and NRS 2016 population Data for Scotland

The ONS data for England and Wales included towns and cities with populations higher than 73,224 people. We therefore only used data from towns and cities in Northern Ireland and Scotland with populations of this figure or more to ensure the data was as accurate and comparable as possible. 

It’s also important to note that the number of searches does not necessarily correlate with the number of people searching, as more than one individual may conduct the same search multiple times.


Global E-Bike Market Trends

Over the last year (2020-2021), approximately 13.4 million searches were made online for electric bikes, suggesting a strong global demand. But does the size of the worldwide e-bike market reflect this? 

Well, as of 2021: 

  • The E-Bike market is estimated to be worth $48.46 billion (£34.74 billion) by 2028.
  • It’s predicted that between 2020 and 2023, around 130 million electric bikes will be sold worldwide.

In Europe alone, it is projected that by 2030, there will be 30 million bike sales per year - half of which will be e-bikes. This would mean that the number of bike sales in 2030 would be double that of new cars registered in the same year!


Why Are E-Bikes Becoming So Popular?

So now we know how popular e-bikes are around the world, but why do so many people want e-bikes at the moment? To find out, we did some digging into the world of e-bikes (when we weren’t riding our own!) to discover what people love most about electric bikes.

Health Benefits 

  • Transport for London’s recent report found that 20% of London residents choose not to cycle as they feel they are unfit or too old, which could in fact make them the perfect candidates for an E-Bike! 

  • The same report found that 28% of E-Bike riders in London purchased their bike as a replacement for a car!

Environmental Impacts 

  • In North America, a study conducted by Portland State University found that 65% of E-Bike owners were motivated to purchase an Electric Bike in order to reduce the number of car journeys and act as a substitute method of travel.

  • In an Australian study, 60% of respondents said that replacing some car journeys was a primary motivating factor for buying an E-Bike.

Speed 

  • In a study featured in the International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity, the average duration required to complete a journey with an Electric Bike was 21% faster than a traditional bike.

Safety Considerations

  • A North American survey found that 42% of respondents say that their E-Bike has helped them avoid collisions with other road users.
  • 60% of E-Bike owners say they feel safer riding an Electric Bike compared to a regular push bike.

Most Popular E Bikes

If these speedy stats have left you itching to give an e-bike a go, why not head over to our range of E-Bikes now and check out our latest deals.