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Is it time to ditch the car?

TRAFFIC is heavier, petrol is expensive and where do you get the time in the day to fit in some much-needed exercise?

If you don’t see yourself getting lycra-ed up on a speedy road bike to get around traffic woes, an electric bicycle might be the answer.

Most people haven’t had the chance to try an e-bike, which is where the free Bicycle Network E-bike Expo comes into the picture.

On Sunday 24 November, the expo will be held at the Hobart Regatta Grounds between 10am and 2pm, along with southern Tasmania’s major e-bike sellers.

You’ll be able to test ride a wide variety of e-bikes, from the toughest of mountain bikes to small folding e-bikes great for the back of the caravan.

There is no pressure to buy and you can also talk to existing riders who are bringing their e-bikes along for a show’n’tell session.

E-bikes are perfect for riding longer distances, getting to your destination faster, flattening hills, and arriving without the sweat.

They are a genuine transport option to replace a car for many people for journeys up to 15km and can also help people with injuries or age-related issues to get back on a bike.

And because you have to pedal for the motor to kick in, you still get exercise, just not with the heart-thumping and sweatiness.

Many people find that because riding an e-bike is so easy they ride much more than they would if they were just on a pushbike, getting a greater overall physical benefit.

E-bike prices have tumbled in the past few years, putting them in reach of many more Tasmanians.

Once you’ve bought the bike, they are cheap to run, with most batteries lasting 50 to 80km, costing about 10 to 15 cents to charge.

You can also catch a glimpse of a variety of e-bikes in Bicycle Network’s ‘Charge of the E-bikes’ entry in this year’s Myer Hobart Christmas Pageant on Saturday 16 November.

Just look for the blue t-shirts, silver tinsel and happy looking bike riders.