The Los Angeles Police Department has had a quirky addition to their fleet of patrol vehicles as they acquire 20 electric bikes. They have been specifically designed for the force and assist officers up to a speed of 28 mph (45 kph).
The LAPD is no stranger to electric vehicles and usually they opt for the really cool ones out there and have seen testing the Tesla Model S and also driving a fleet of BMW i3 reportedly.
The new recruits though come on two-wheels and have been specifically equipped for the police by Bosch eBike systems that is currently building their market in the USA. The electric drive for the police pedelecs are tuned to support to up to 45 kph, or 28 miles an hour which would classify them as speed pedelecs in Europe, that is small motorcycles.
In the States however, regulation varies and given that it is the police riding them, it looks as if they will replace a good part of the regular bike fleet of the LAPD. In fact, the 20 pedal-assist bikes make for the largest such fleet in the country.
LAPD Chief Charlie Beck is a vocal supporter: “E-bikes are the future of bicycling in my opinion, especially in an urban environment. You can cover long distances at a good speed and get as much workout as you want. They also work great in pedestrian environments, crowded environments like Venice Beach or Hollywood Boulevard – all of the places that we use regular bicycles now.”
The LAPD pedelecs are expected to roll out next week.