The EU Includes Bicycles in “Right to Repair” Scope!

The European Commission has incorporated bicycles into the scope of the “right to repair” proposal in the EU. This proposal was first introduced by European Parliament members in March last year, and it was voted on and approved by the Internal Market and Consumer Protection Committee (IMCO) during the plenary session of the European Parliament held in Strasbourg, France in November.

Providing Repair Services Beyond the Warranty Period

Under this proposal, bicycle manufacturers must provide repair services for their products beyond the statutory warranty period, just like household products such as washing machines and vacuum cleaners. Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) aim for repairs to be carried out within a reasonable timeframe, and manufacturers should provide consumers with replacement products during the repair period. If a product cannot be repaired, the manufacturer needs to provide a brand new one.

This proposal believes that repair services beyond the warranty period can promote a more transparent and competitive repair market. Independent repairers, refurbishers, and end-users should have access to all parts, information, and tools throughout the product’s lifecycle at a reasonable cost. This can help reduce repair costs and provide consumers with more choices.

Legislator René Repasi stated when the proposal was passed: “Today, we have set direct repair obligations for manufacturers and introduced new incentives for consumers to choose repair, strengthening the role of independent repairers as key players in improving the repair situation in Europe. Making it easier for repairers to access relevant repair technical information and affordable parts, including encouraging 3D printing of parts, will lower repair costs as more competition enters the market. We combine this with an obligation for member states to establish financial incentive schemes to promote the development of the repair industry.”

Debate Over the Inclusion of Electric Bicycles

However, there is a debate over whether electric bicycles should be excluded from the right to repair legislation. The US trade organization People for Bikes, representing bicycle manufacturers, has been contacting legislators and state officials, requesting that electric bicycles be excluded from the right to repair legislation. The organization argues that these laws are designed to make it easier for the public to access the parts, tools, and information needed for bicycle repairs, but there are safety concerns, and untrained individuals should not attempt to repair electric bicycles, especially their battery components.

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