Understanding Ebike Laws in Canada: Your Guide to Riding Legally

Understanding Ebike Laws in Canada: Your Guide to Riding Legally

E-bikes are gaining raging popularity, and all credit to their environment-friendly specs. Nowadays, as more people are getting aware of their functionality and the less stress they are having on the ecosystem, their purchases are increasing; in this regard, Canada is no longer an exception. However, with the rise in their use in Canada, there must be an increase in awareness of their service. 

Different places in Canada have various federal regulations imposed on e-bike use. It is done considering the rider's safety and compliance with laws to maintain public order. We have compiled the related information in this write-up to give you a clear view. 

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Canadian Law: E-Bikes Definition

As per the Canadian definition for e-bikes, they are more commonly known as 'power assist bicycles,' 'assist bicycles', or 'electric pedal-assist bicycles.' These differ from the regular bikes that involve engines with internal combustion capacities. 

Electric Bikes Classification in Canada

As a thumb rule electric bikes can be classified as;

Class 1 E-Bike: These electric bikes in Canada have a motor capacity of 500W or less, and the top speed cannot go beyond 32 kmph or 20mph. 

Class 2 E-Bike: It comes with a throttle. Owing to their power these can touch a top speed of 20mph.

Class 3 E-Bike: It has a pedal assist only. It comes with a top speed of 28 mph. 

Canada Law: Federal regulations For Electric Bikes

Canada has had MVSR (Motor Vehicle Safety Regulations) and CAN (Nova Scotia) governing vehicle rules since 2000. Herein e-bikes are kept into another category called PABs, i.e., Power Assisted Bicycles. So, you don't require a license to drive them. However, each province in Canada has different rules.

Federal Regulations: Speed and Power Limits

Since e-bikes do not require any license, anyone above the age of 12 may not need paperwork related to e-bikes. The Canadian government also abides by these rules in most of its provinces as federal regulations.

So, there is a set limit of 32 mph or 20 mph for the top speed of e-bikes, along with 500 watts or less of motor capacity. All the provinces follow this speed limit and limit on motor capacity. However, in some places, if you are 12-16 years of age, the speed may be slower than the mentioned limit.

Other Requirements:

  • If you are riding an e-bike in a Canadian province, it must have pedal assists, steering handlebars, and throttle functions. All of these are compulsory to lessen the load on your e-bike's battery. Once you are not pedaling, it assists in the disengagement of your vehicle's engine.
  • You cannot exceed a limit of 500W of motor capacity in your e-bike. Additionally, the rider must wear a helmet irrespective of age. 
  • Your ebike must be labeled to meet all federal regulations.

Electric Bike Regulations in Canada: Provincial and Territorial 

If you are looking to get an e-bike in Canadian provinces, you must note that most of them do not need a license to ride an e-bike. But not all of them have this independence, so you must check out all the rules and regulations applying to these provinces before moving with your bike. 

You may find certain restrictions on power along with speed on e-bikes in Canada, which is purely done to maintain safety along with proper use of federal license insurance and formal training regarding the use of vehicles. You must also notice that if you own an e-bike with a suspended driver's license owing to issues like drunk driving, aggressive driving, or speeding tickets, you are allowed to ride an e-bike. 

Let us learn some rules specifically levied by Canadian Provinces on e-bike riders in the form of a simple table.

Table Showing Rules Followed by Different Provinces in Canada


Rules Followed

Age Required for License

Newfoundland and Labrador

Herein it would be best to have a reflector, a red rear light, and white front light in your E-bike. 

If the rider's age is between 14 to 17 years, permission from related authorities is required.

If the rider is 18 years or above, registration or a license to operate the E-bike is unnecessary.

Northwest Territories, Yukon and Nunavut

Herein all the federal rules and regulations apply owing to the federal jurisdiction in operation. 


There are no age limits in Nunavut for riding e-bikes. However, wearing a helmet and following rules set by the local authorities and state for vehicles is mandatory.  


Herein the e-bike is compulsory to have the manufacturer's original label. However, the rider has the freedom of driving the e-bike with three wheels.

The rider of 18 and above must have a class 6D license. Besides, only riders above 14 are allowed to ride e-bikes.


Herein the classification has been done between a battery-powered bike that can be operated using pedals and a motor simultaneously or if you have a cycle that runs on power but uses pedals and motor together or a motor alone.

The bicycle running on power must abide by the rules set by CMVSS- Canadian Motor Vehicle Safety Standards.

You must require a registration or license to operate a bicycle assisted with power, and you must be 14 years or above to ride it. 

Prince Edward Island

Here the rules related to e-bikes have been updated in recent years. The rider must have a tail lamp or light attached to their e-bike to ride it in this location legally.  

New Brunswick

In this place, the e-bikes must have a seat height of around 68 cm above the ground level. They must also have wheel rims that are not under 22 cm. It must have a functional headlight to make the E-bike operational at night.  

There are no restrictions on the minimum riding age for an e-bike in this place.

Nova Scotia

Similar to the regular pedal bikes,  the ones with power assistants are treated the same. The rider must wear a helmet along with a good chin strap set right at the place while driving the e-bike. 

No age limit.


Herein the riders do not require any license, insurance, or registration to operate an e-bike. However, they must wear a helmet while using an e-bike. Additionally, the passenger must have a designated seat, and they are not entertained on the vehicle's handlebars.

Anyone of 12 or more years of age can ride a bike with a restriction of traveling alone and not carrying a passenger unless they are above 16 years.


Being one of the recent provinces to pass a legal Veto over e-bikes being used on roads, Ontario follows similar rules as followed by British Columbia. However, they are more strict than the other provinces in this case. 

Along with this, you must follow a 9-meter braking distance with a restriction of 120 kgs of the weight of the E-bike.

It is required to wear a helmet while riding an e-bike and must be 16+ years old to ride a bike.

British Columbia

Herein, you may call the e-bikes a different name as motor-assisted cycles. However, the rules apply to them just as in other provinces.

Besides, it is a must for the rider to wear a helmet while driving the e-bike. 

There is  arule of being 16 years or above to ride e-bikes in this province. You may not get your e-bike insured, and that is perfectly fine here. However, you must have a driving license or any registration stating that you are equipped with riding capabilities.


Wearing a good quality helmet that fits the head well while riding an e-bike in this place is mandatory for the rider's safety. The Canadian government rules are applied here for using ordinary bicycles and other vehicles.

The rider must not be less than 14 to ride the E-bike. The riders are required to mobility in a single form if they do not allow a pass for a turning or passing another rider. 

Note: Top speed of 32kmph along with a 500 watts motor or less applies to all the provinces.

Electric Bikes: Places to Ride

Although electric bikes are safe to ride in most places, there are certain places where they are specifically not allowed owing to their safety issue, where heavy motor vehicles are typically driven. These are;

  • Ontario allows e-bikes on all the highways, pathways, and roads where regular bicycles are allowed. But it comes with the exception of expressways, 400-series highways, and other places where there is a bicycle restriction.
  • E-bikes are prohibited on sidewalks, trails, lanes, and paths where their prohibition is mentioned in clear words.
  • Quebec restricts e-bikes on highways, along with access ramps and exit points.


We hope to guide you about the significant rules followed in Canada. Here are a few FAQs to check about regulations related to e-bikes in Canada. 

Do I require a license or registration to ride an electric bike in Canada?

Most Canadian provinces do not require you to have a registration or license to ride an e-bike in Canada. However, some exceptions exist, like British Columbia, Manitoba, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, etc.

Do I require to wear a helmet when riding my E-Bike in Canada?

Yes, almost all the provinces and territories in Canada impose a regulation of wearing a helmet while riding an E-bike. It is for the safety of the rider.

Are there any age limits for riding an electric bike in Canada?

Yes, Ontario, British Columbia, Alberta, Newfoundland, and Labrador allow e-bike riders aged 16 years or above. One must be 14 years or older to ride an e-bike in Saskatchewan, Manitoba, and Quebec. In comparison, the rest of the provinces in Canada do not impose any age restrictions on E-bike riders.

Final Words

With the rise in the use of e-bikes owing to their convenience, it is necessary to levy required rules and regulations to maintain law and order. Besides this, these laws also pave the way to better driving and safety of riders, wherein it is mandatory to wear helmets while riding e-bikes. 

Additionally, age restrictions in some provinces of Canada also ensure that teens do not take these laws liberally and feel responsible for their safety, along with abiding by speed limits set by the government. We hope you find the above helpful information and abide by it next time you ride your E-bike in Canada. Happy biking!

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