Electric Pedal Assist vs. Throttle: All the Difference You Need To Know

Electric Pedal Assist vs. Throttle: All the Difference You Need To Know


Electric bikes are proving to be a fun and eco-friendly alternative to your daily commute or just a way to do more outdoor physical activity. The great point about e-bikes is that you can choose to do a workout if you want, or you can just enjoy the ride with peace of mind. Electric bikes give you this freedom that traditional bikes lack. An electric bike allows you to ride farther and longer with the help of pedal assist and throttle.

Choosing the right e-bike for your needs can be challenging. There are different assortments, frame types, wheel sizes, and e-bike models. But one of the most controversial topics is the difference between the two most popular modes: pedal assist and throttle. What exactly do these settings work for your e-bike, and which one best suits your needs?

The answer may be subjective, depending on the type of rider you are and how you want to ride, but Magicycle can help you move in the direction that is best for you! If you're considering buying an electric bike, it's important to understand the different ways to activate electric assist. Knowing what types of assists and how each one works will help you make the best decision to buy. The following contents will help you break down the difference and operation between pedal assist and throttle in detail.

What is Pedal Assist?

Pedal assist is a great option for cyclists who need an assist and prefer the feel of a traditional bike. Pedal assist only provides power when you pedal. With this mode on, you always have control over how hard you want to pedal. This is especially useful and suitable for those who have never ridden an e-bike before, as it allows for an easy transition from a regular pedal bike. It feels just like a regular bike, only with the help of the motor to make it easier for you to go uphill.

Pedal Assist Type

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Torque Sensor Pedal Assist

This type of system measures how much power you use to pedal the bike, and it automatically increases or decreases the amount of assist based on how hard you pedal. The torque sensor system provides a more intuitive feel as it simulates your pedal power so well. Recommended for those looking for a premium riding feel. For example, if you push harder it will give the motor more power. The lighter the pedal, the less power it gives the motor.

Cadence Sensor Pedal Assist

It helps when the bike cranks work. This type of assist does not increase or decrease the assist based on the amount of effort you use. It relies on the level of assist you choose and is not affected by actual pedal power. This is ideal for those who want to use an electric bike for recreation. It is especially useful for those who have some physical constraints as it can be turned up or down without extra effort from the rider, that is, you can use a lot or little force and the bike will help you with the same efforts to move forward.

Typically, there are multiple pedal assist levels on electric mountain bikes, depending on how hard you want to put in while riding. Pedal assist may vary from a low setting to a high setting or 4 to 5 assist levels, depending on the levels of the e-bike given by the manufacturer. With the included sensors, each mode affects your trip by providing more or less power. Using the lowest setting will give you a little electric assist and make you feel like you're exercising or riding a normal bike, but that means that you're doing most of the work for pushing your ebike move. The medium mode gives you more help when pedaling, allowing you to ride farther than ever. While the highest setting offers you a bigger boost in power, it gets you to your destination faster without breaking a sweat. You can adjust your levels of assist using the monitor or a separate controller.

Another benefit of pedal assist is that the system helps extend battery life. Riding the electric bike on the lowest assist setting can extend battery life, especially compared to throttle. On the Magicycle electric bikes for adults, there are typically 7 levels of pedal assist; the higher the number, the more energy the motor is exerting in order to propel you forward while you pedal. It’s also easy to adjust pedal assist power while riding: simply press the plus [+] button to increase power or the minus [-] button to decrease the amount of power the electric motor is applying to the crankset in accordance to your pedal stroke.

What is A Throttle?

The throttle function of an e-bike is similar to that of a motorcycle or electric scooter because when it is engaged, the motor provides power and propels the electric bike forward. There are actually three common types of throttles you will see on ebikes, including thumb throttles, full-twist throttles, and half-twist throttles.

Twist Throttle

Twist throttles, which can include the full twist or half twist, are twisted downward to activate the motor, similar to throttles you find on scooters and motorcycles. full twist throttle is the most common electric bike throttle. The rider simply turns the throttle to accelerate the e-bike.

Thumb Throttle

As the name suggests, thumb throttles are operated using your thumb, where you push down on a small, spring-loaded thumb-size paddle to engage the motor. The more you push down, the faster the bike will go. Some have many buttons to control the speed of the bike, while others have just one switch.

Different types of throttle function differently, depending on how they engage. It's important to know whether the throttle you choose can be activated when the bike is stationary or only when you start pedaling. Some accelerators can only be used when pedaling, so as not to inadvertently step on the accelerator when the user is stationary and get injured. This is useful to avoid accidents on the first ride.

The throttle button, usually located on the handlebar of your electric bike, directly powers the motor up to top speed without pedaling. Just twist or push the throttle and go! This feature is for commuters focused on moving from one place to another without any sweat. If you're exhausted from pedaling, the throttle helps you get up to speed even you stop pedaling. Surely, riders who regularly use the throttle on their ebikes may notice that overall battery life will be lessened per charge.

All Magicycle electric bikes for adults are equipped with a twist throttle, so when the throttle is twisted towards you, the bike is ready to go! You are able to use the throttle to safely pass others on the bike path and accelerate uphill.

Can an e-bike have both throttle and pedal assist?

Magicycle Cruiser Pro

Some ebikes for sale are equipped with both throttle and pedal assist modes, just like Magicycle ebikes for sale. You can operate on pedal assist and get an additional boost by engaging the throttle. You can set up the bike for different classes. It all depends on what you need for the situation. But that's not all - because the Magicycle Cruiser Pro's multi-level riding modes also allow you to accelerate beyond 28 mph. Your top speed will vary based on conditions and rider weight. Some e-bikes have two modes, but you have to switch between them because they can't be used at the same time.

Which mode should you choose?

Choosing the right e-bike mode depends on your needs and how you will use your e-bike. If you want to enjoy cruising around with little to no effort or you are looking to sit back and enjoy the scenery, using the throttle is the best way to do that. On the other hand, if you are interested in getting a little workout in and actively pedaling or if you enjoy the feel of a traditional bike, then pedal assist mode is the way to go.

If you want to enjoy your ride anyway, or can't determine between the two modes, just get an electric bike with pedal assist and throttle. Enjoy either system on the fly your way. And luckily for you, Magicycle offers both a PAS and throttle control on most electric bike models at an affordable price. This allows you to ride with a mixture of both the throttle and pedal assist, giving you the best of both worlds and options on how to approach your desired ride.

The most important point is that you must confirm whether your location allows you to use a certain type of electric bike because many places in the United States use a classification system to regulate electric bicycles.

All in All

Anything that improves rider comfort and gives you the confidence to go out and ride longer is a benefit, the combination of throttle and pedal assist is like the car filled with gas before driving through a town, it allows you to enjoy a hassle-free ride. Whether you prefer the ebike throttle modes or pedal - the Magicycle is yours!

The best electric mountain bikes are for sale on magicyclebike.com! And limited offers are available right now! Free shipping, you don't want to miss them!

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