GM asked the FHP: Can a bicycle with a gas assist motor be operated legally on Florida roadways?
The Florida Highway Patrol has definitively stated that a bicycle with a gas assist motor cannot be legally operated on the roadway.
Below is the email string that resulted in that answer. Read from the bottom up.
That is correct.
Customer Service Center
Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles
Sent: Friday, March 07, 2014 4:33 PM
Subject: Re: Question about the laws
Thank you for your timely response.
Can I then deduce that a bicycle equipped with a gas-assist motor which cannot be registered as a moped or motorcycle cannot legally be operated on the roadway?
On Mar 7, 2014, at 4:17 PM, FHP wrote:
Thanks for your inquiry. Please see 320.01(28) below for your answer.
F.S.S. 322.03(1) requires: “Except as otherwise authorized in this
chapter, a person may not drive any motor vehicle upon a highway in
this state unless such person has a valid driver’s license issued
under this chapter.”
F.S.S. 322.01(27) defines a Motor Vehicle as: “any self‐propelled
vehicle, including a motor vehicle combination, not operated upon
rails or guideway, excluding vehicles moved solely by human power,
motorized wheelchairs, and motorized bicycles as defined in s. 316.003.”
F.S.S. 316.003 defines a Motorized Bicycle as: “motorized bicycle
propelled by a combination of human power and an electric helper motor
capable of propelling the vehicle at a speed of not more than 20 miles
per hour on level ground upon which any person may ride, having two
tandem wheels, and including any device generally recognized as a
bicycle though equipped with two front or two rear wheels.”
F.S.S. 320.01(28) defines a Moped as: “any vehicle with pedals to
permit propulsion by human power, having a seat or saddle for the use
of the rider and designed to travel on not more than three wheels,
with a motor rated not in excess of 2 brake horsepower and not capable
of propelling the vehicle at a speed greater than 30 miles per hour on
level ground, and with a power‐drive system that functions directly or
automatically without clutching or shifting gears by the operator
after the drive system is engaged. If an internal combustion engine is
used, the displacement may not exceed 50 cubic centimeters.”
F.S.S. 320.0803 requires Mopeds to be registered and display a moped
Customer Service Center
Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles www.flhsmv.gov
Sent: Friday, March 07, 2014 2:35 PM
Subject: Question about the laws
Is it legal to operate a bicycle under the power of a gas assist motor in Florida?
The statute that defines a bicycle includes an electric assist motor and therefore does not require a driver’s license, registration or title.
s. 316.003 – Definitions
(2) Bicycle – Every vehicle propelled solely by human power, and every
motorized bicycle propelled by a combination of human power and an
electric helper motor capable of propelling the vehicle at a speed of
not more than 20 miles per hour on level ground upon which any person
There is no mention of bicycles with gas assist motors in the statutes, but they are included under the definition of motor vehicle. The DHSMV states they cannot be registered and are not mopeds or motorcycles.
If bicycles with gas assist motors can be legally operated on the roadways, please advise of the statutory authority.