LEVs - fast growing future of urban mobility

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21st November, 2019

News type : Recent news

LEVs caterization

Personal Light Electric Vehicles (LEVs) are vehicles falling under the vehicle category L (L13 - Lte) in the European Union (EU), which to a certain extent, is comparable to the Sub-A class in the United States. The EU's L-categors comprises two-, three- and four-wheeled vehicles such as motorcycles, mopeds, scooters, trikes, quads and minicars with limited weight and power (max. 550 kg, max. 15 kW) as defined in Regulation (EU) 168/2013 (L). Industrial, utility, agricultural and all-terrain vehicles can be added to the group of vehicles as long as they do not fall under the specifications of Regulation No. (EU) 167/2013 (T) (ATVEA, 2014) on the approval and market surveillance of agricultural and forestry vehicles.


a challenge arises when  comparability between vehicles and regulations in different countries is not fully given. For instance, terminology and regulatory standards for these vehicles are not universal. This means that not all countries categorize LEVs and LSEVs according to the very same criteria. The categorization schemes of most potetial international markets has been analyzed and shows a comparison of such schemes in Europe, the United States, China and India in function of the vehicle's speed range.


Electric mobility, in general, seems to be gaining a favorable pace in Europe. In order to gain a clear understanding of the market for LEVs, it should be noted that not every sold electric two-wheeler can be taken into consideration when creating or assessing data for the electric share of the L-category. For instance, an electric bicycle with assisted pedaling reaching a maximum speed level of 25 km/h, often known as e-bike or Pedelec, is not part of the L-category statistics given that this type of vehicles neither requires a vehicle registration, nor an insurance, nor helmet use. Therefore, markets with booming Pedelec sales may seem less atractive on the paper as they register more moderate numbers of what is officially considered a light electric vehicle according to European regulation. Electric scooters (e-scooters) and electric motorcycles (e-motorcycles) probably owe their low sales to high purchase prices combined with a relatively low distance range. For these reasons, they do not yet represent a competative substitute to gas powered two-wheelers. Technological improvements on the fields of collision avoidance and automated driving in combination with intelligent traffic systems may, however, trigger a more favorable demand of Light Electric Vehicles in the next decades than what is expected nowadays. The reason behind this is that road traffic in general would become safer and reduce the accident vulnerability of powered light vehicle users.

United States of America

In the USA, bicycles are primarily used for sports and recreation; motorized two-wheelers (mopeds, motorcycles) are used for fun. In Europe, besides it being used to fulfill these same purposes, bicycles and powered two-wheelers are seen as means of transportation. Given these cultural differences, it is not a surprise that the USA has not exhibited such a large growth in sales of e-bike and other electric two-wheelers in comparison to Europe. Yet, while the US could easily be seen as one big market, it is rather convenient to look at it as a compilation of many local markets with different characteristics, preferences and living styles. Electric mobility in general has especially widespread in the states and metropolitan areas along the West and East coasts. California as well as Florida are within the list of regions with most electric vehicles in operation or with highest growth.


A rather polluted environment, congested traffic and increasing urbanization are factors that have favored the demand for such vehicles and still constitute important drivers for the largest market for light electric vehicles. This is the result of the implementation of local government's policy and capability of the industry of offering low-cost products available for anyone. The overall success of such vehicles, especially in rural areas, seems to derive from their very favorable price/performance ratio and their low running costs. 


The Indian mobility market is characterized by its majority share of two-wheelers. Besides that, India is the largest producer and user of three-wheelers, from which a majority of the vehicles are dedicated to passenger transport, whereas the rest belong to the cargo segment. The Indian two-wheeler market seem to be going through avery favorable phase. With newer, more attractive and innovative vehicle models at acceptable prices, sales volumes are expanding enourmously. Due to the high ranking of the pollution in the cities, has the Indian government set up several programs to speed up the light electric mobility by boostening the domestic production of electric vehicles. The incentives and the market potential attract man foreign producers of vehicles to establish the production in India.

Market potential

Even though authorities and vehicle associations attempt to harmonize the categorization schemes of light vehicles in their countries, have Jamerson and Benjamin (2016) estimated yearly sales of the most relevant world markets for electric bicycles and electric mopeds (L1e-B /L2e /L3e category) until 2035.


Comparison of estimated sales volumes for both vehicle types

The Light Electric Vehicle market is a rather young market, which has also been found appropriate for innovative mobility business models. Asian markets, especially China, offer potential for highest-volume sales in the future. The product offering differs to a great extent to those observed in Europe or the North American markets, where high quality, reliability and innovation are regarded a high value. Eventually, the general global strategy is only directed towards the reduction of emissions, but also towards an overall improvement of traffic, especially in large urban areas. Therefore, it appears necessary for governments that they revised their strategies towards clean transport in order to include Light Electric Vehicles a s most accessible solution for all society levels in them. This is causing the segment very atractive, especially for the global investors. Also auto makers, and auto suppliers, are following and entering the LEV business with expanded technology and marketing options.

Electric propulsion for LEV

In compliance with global trends, GEM motors cares for the sustainable society and with it's contribution to increase the quality of living. Our dedication is to shape the future of light electric mobility with advanced, high quality and smart electric drive solution with superior performance.


GEM motors is setting new standards in the field of smart electric drive propulsion systems with unique and simple drive solutions for LEVs vehicles. Based on patented modular multiphase technology, we incorporated the electric motor, the motor controller with CAN control and the wheel into one unit. The GEM all-in-wheel solution introduces some significant advantages compared to the standard in-runner electric motor with transmission or standard in-wheel motor with external controller, which are a rather complex propulsion systems. GEM drive offers an optimized direct-drive propulsion with high torque and increased overall efficiency. It is in line with future trends of highly integrated solutions, reducing weight, space and number of parts for electric propulsion.


GEM in-wheel drive is the most integrated and the most efficient solution on the market, using minimum space possible. Due to its small size and fully automated control, it is a perfect solution for diverse applications.


Certain is that light and low-speed electric vehicles seem to come in utterly diverse shapes as they can also serve many different purposes: individual or shared mobility, passenger or goods transport, use in urban or confined areas, as a last-mile or as a leisure vehicle, among others. This surely opens up many possibilities for manufacturers, yet, the paradigms regarding significant improvements in technology and costs are getting broken globaly.







Keywords: LEVs,urban mobility,emobility,gem,light mobility