Assessing the E-bike trends and impact on sustainable mobility: a national-level study in the Netherlands

The Netherlands, known for its vibrant bicycle culture, boasts a high e-bike adoption rate in the Europe relative to its population. As of 2021, two out of every ten individuals in the Netherlands own an e-bike, with 3 % of the Dutch population purchasing one annually. Historically, e-bike usage in the Netherlands was primarily leisure-oriented, with the elderly as the pioneering adopters. However, recent trends indicate a demographic shift in adoption. Younger users are increasingly choosing e-bikes, employing them more for work-related commutes rather than leisure. This shift suggests e-bikes could increasingly replace car trips, thereby boosting their contribution to sustainability. However, modelling on e-bike trend development and assessments of their impact on national-level mobility are often lacking in current studies. The Netherlands Institute for Transport Policy Analysis (KiM) introduces an innovative approach to model e-bike development, employing a multilevel Richards growth curve model fitted within a hierarchical Bayesian framework using the Hamiltonian Monte Carlo (HMC) method. 

Further, this study incorporates an intention-based method to delve into the potential of e-bikes in stimulating sustainable mobility in the Netherlands. This study provides insight into whether and to what extent e-bikes substitute for car use and other modes of transportation, and how the expected growth in e-bike use in coming years may impact national mobility in the Netherlands.

See also Journal of Cycling and Micromobility Research