I have tires with (among others) official-looking decals implying (with varying wording and symbology) that they are "ebike-ready" (EBR) and rated to speeds of either 25 km/h or 50 km/h. I recently wondered, "who certifies these?" I.e., is there an independent certification authority (e.g., UL or one of the many organic food certifiers), or can any bike-tire manufacturer just slap this on the sidewall {at will, with no external verification}?

So I did some websearch and ... got surprisingly little. I did find one good Medium post about ebike certifications generally, but it has nothing about tires other than a mention of ISO 5775, which (IIUC--which I might not!) only regulates tire and rim sizing.

Edit: Thanks to @Affe, I eventually found something that's almost, just tantalizingly close to what I want. The Dutch standardization org NEN publishes (though only behind a paywall) a standard (NTA 8776) for helmets for "speed pedelecs" (which AFAICS == ebikes). More importantly, they publish this table of NTA-8776-certified helmets (archived here) which not only includes the make and model of each NTA-8776-certified helmet, but also the Certifying Body ... which appear to be independent. (FWIW, the values in field=Certifying Body are in each current case one of

). So I'd be very interested to see similar data regarding standards, compliant products (per the standards setter--i.e., not the maker/vendor), and certifying bodies for {ebike, speed pedelec} tires. (FWIW, I searched for this on the NEN website but found nothing.) Until then, my guess is there are standards for ebike tires, but the tire maker self-certifies to the standard.

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    I'm fairly certain it's a manufacturer's badge, but lack the proof to make it into an answer – Chris H Sep 28 '19 at 19:37
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    I suspect that all they are saying is that use on an E-bike will not invalidate any warranty. – Daniel R Hicks Sep 28 '19 at 20:18
  • I regularly get a top speed from my computer of over 50km/h on my MTB on single track. Should I be worried I only run MTB tires? – mattnz Sep 29 '19 at 2:51
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    While it's true that many ebikers accelerate harder than many normal bikers do (especially the acceleration from a full stop can be significantly higher), the braking/acceleration force is not the largest force a tire needs to be able to withstand. That largest force is the centripetal force while cornering. Braking force is typically limited by the bike's tipping point, cornering force is only limited by traction. A good tire can handle a 1G sideways force in a corner, and that is a force that even ebikes do not typically reach accelerating or decelerating. – cmaster - reinstate monica Sep 29 '19 at 4:45
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    @Chris H: 1 of 2: In my experience, the major difference between "ebike-ready" and non-EBR tires is not so much the tread as the sidewalls. I mostly ride a {normal, human-power-only} recumbent with (frequently heavily loaded) rear bags, so the weight is mostly distributed rear. I've noticed that, if a tube in an EBR front tire punctures and I then walk/roll the bent, the front wheel will roll easily with little tire distortion or danger to rim. Similar [failure, response] sequence with a non-EBR tire will trash the tire and possibly damage the rim due to sidewall folding. – TomRoche Sep 29 '19 at 16:53

For the name brand tires that are certified 50km/hr there is an actual international standard that the tire manufacturer is certifying against. These are tires that are built to the UNECE motor vehicle tire specifications instead of bicycle specifications.

For example all Schwalbe tires (at least for 2019 product line) that bear their "Energizer" badge printed on the sidewall are certified to that standard.

For tires that are recommended for 25km/hr it appears to be purely manufacturer's recommendation.

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    Mopeds (even electric ones) aren't e-bikes. They're hovered by a different set of laws and standards, and are much heavier and more powerful. The speed ratings on Schwalbe's e-bike tyres match this of classes of e-bike in Europe, and fall short of the lowest you'd need for the most basic moped. – Chris H Oct 3 '19 at 5:44
  • In more detail: the link provided as a citation is only relevant to motor vehicle tyres; the lowest speed category listed is 50km/h, while for e-bikes in Europe the standard assisted speed limit is half that (the new "speed pedelec" category is max 45 km/h - and didn't exist when the linked standard was publish) – Chris H Oct 3 '19 at 9:36
  • @ChrisH Are you saying Schwalbe is lying to consumers? I got the basic information from Schwalbe's own marketing literature, which asserts the meaning of the their "energizer" badge is the tire is designed to that standard. I'm not asserting it's actually useful or necessary to have such a tire on an e-bike..... (I have german pedelec and the OE tires were not 'e-bike ready') – Affe Oct 3 '19 at 15:22
  • they may choose to design them to that standard in addition to any standards that actually apply, but that's simply not a bicycles standard – Chris H Oct 3 '19 at 15:26
  • Ok.... and the answer to the question "What does the EBR ready badge mean on a tire?" according to the manufacturer is "It's built to motor vehicle standard instead of bicycle standard."... – Affe Oct 3 '19 at 15:30

Firstly, thanks to @Affe for pointing me in the right direction: once I got 'ECE' in my search selectors, I started to get much more useful results.

The answer(s) seems to be as follows ... but ICBW, so if you find more/changing information, comment or make a separate answer, and I'll add or check that.

  1. The manufacturer of an "ebike-ready" (EBR) tire self-certifies ... at least as of early 2018 when e-Bike Rumor published Why are e-Bike tires different from regular bicycle tires? (archived here). This is an interview with managers from Kenda and Maxxis, both of whom imply (IIUC--your reading of this fairly short article may differ from mine) that {they, the manufacturer} self-certifies to a self-perceived relevant standard:
  2. There are EBR standards, but IIUC currently (Oct 2019) only in EU. Websearching (post-@Affe) shows several references to either of ECE-R75 or ECE-75R standard or certification, but also repeated reference to those being "European" or "valid throughout Europe." Which makes sense to me, because

    • as an American, it would not surprise me at all if no cert/standard was currently legally enforceable here :-(.
    • ECE == Economic Commission for Europe ... but that includes the US (and Canada) as a "non-European Member State," so ICBW, but ...
    • In the e-Bike Rumor article above (date=5 Feb 2018), the Kenda rep says (exact quote)

      Currently, the US has no specific regulations that govern the tires on e-bikes. There are limits to speed (32k/20mph), wattage, and dependent on local laws whether or not an e-bike can be used on bike paths or mountain bike trails. In Europe there is the ECE-75R endurance testing.

    Hence my guess (ICBW) is that there's currently (Oct 2019) nothing (other than conscience :-) stopping a tire maker from slapping an EBR badge on any given tire provided the maker did not attempt to sell said tire in the EU.

  3. There are independent certification authorities who test ebike helmets, but only Europe-based, and I currently know of none for ebike tires. As now noted in the updated question, the Dutch standards org NEN promulgates standards regarding "speed pedelecs" (which AFAICS == ebikes). The standards themselves are paywalled, but NEN open-publishes a table of NTA-8776-certified helmets (archived here) which not only includes the make and model of each NTA-8776-certified helmet, but also the Certifying Body, which in each current case are one of

So I'd be very interested to see data similar to NEN's regarding standards, standard-compliant products (by make/model), and certifying bodies

  1. for {ebike, speed pedelec} tires as opposed to helmets. (Not that the latter aren't important, and I will definitely look at the NEN list before I replace my current helmet.)
  2. per the standards setter (i.e., not the maker/vendor).
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