In for a penny - trike vs velomobile

DIscuss anything relating to non-standard cycles and their equipment.
Posts: 66
Joined: 18 Aug 2016, 6:03pm
Location: Hamburg, Germany

Re: In for a penny - trike vs velomobile

Postby Marc » 7 Jan 2020, 10:58pm

Tigerbiten wrote:At the moment, a motorized four wheled "bike" falls outside the scope of the E-bike law.
That only covers "bikes" with two or three wheels.
So it will need tax,insurance and mot to go on the road no matter the motor size.

According to that doesn't seem to be the case:

"Trikes and Quadricycles
Electrically Assisted Pedal Cycles are permitted to have more than 3 wheels (with no weight restriction)." ... c-bike-law

This seems to be is the official document: ... 024_en.pdf

On page three it states:
"These Regulations amend the Electrically Assisted Pedal Cycles Regulations 1983 which prescribe the class of electrically assisted pedal cycles treated as not being a motor vehicle within the meaning of the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984 and the Road Traffic Act 1988.
The amendments made by these Regulations change the prescribed class of electrically assisted pedal cycles in order to:
• permit such vehicles to have more than three wheels;
• remove any weight limits applicable to such vehicles;

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Joined: 3 Mar 2020, 8:28am

Re: In for a penny - trike vs velomobile

Postby pn_day » 10 Mar 2020, 8:45am

Just to add to this discussion.

I have never owned a trike, fancied a velomobile, and happened upon an old but usable Alleweder so bought it sight unseen. I love it.

The biggest benefit for me is the ability to get out of the wind/rain - only my head/neck are exposed - and to carry whatever is needed (spare clothes for the commute, snacks for the way, many tools & spare parts because I'm paranoid) all in the comfort of the shell. I've ridden in colder temperatures than I tried with the conventional bike (freezing temps) without any issue - winter tyres, a warm hat/buff & ski goggles are the only additions.

I added a small crank drive to mine. It was nicer to ride without it (Q-factor, and the crank 'feel' when pedalling without power was better), but all the hills on my commute are twisty 60 mph country lanes, including the last 2 miles of my commute (big climb). Without the motor I was crawling up at 2-3 mph, with a very long stream of traffic and nowhere for them to pass. With the motor, I'm about 12-14 mph for a similar amount of effort.

I would love one that wasn't heavy, old and battered. Then again, I take mine on cycle paths, and don't mind if the bushes and plants scratch it (which is inevitable in the spring), or if I misjudge the angle to get through a barrier and touch the side.

One other thing that hasn't been mentioned yet. You will get lots of attention. Every time you ride. I find a polite smile, wave and ding of the bell suffices, but it is not for the shy and retiring.