They’re eco-friendly, technologically advanced and electric.

Roman Orekhov builds custom electric-bikes in his Victoria shop, Bearcraft Bikes.

He started making e-bikes in Russia over a decade ago.

“I was able to keep up like 60 kilometres an hour back then,” says Orekhov.

“It was a pretty crazy e-bike.”

Now in Victoria, he bikes over 3,600 kilometres in one year.

Though he has a car, he uses the e-bike as his main mode of transportation.

And he’s not alone, e-bike dealers say business is booming.

Not only do they cost pennies to operate, they get you where you want to go quickly.

One of the reasons many users like e-bikes is because it can get up to 32 kilometres an hour without pedaling your bike.

But the initial cost of an e-bike, up to $3000, is discouraging future riders.

“I think they’re fantastic, but they’re an investment,” says Chelsea, a passerby along Yates Street.

Those selling the bikes say buyers should look beyond the sale price.

“That’s a lot of money for anyone to drop for a transportation option,” says Karl Ullrich, owner of Oak Bay Bicycles.

“But if you start to dissect it and you keep your car off the road a chunk, quickly that number looks more affordable.”

Ullrich says that the bikes aren’t a fad.

He’s convinced it’s something most drivers will pick up on… it’s just a matter of time.

As for Orekhov, he’s just glad to be out and about, especially with the expanse of bike lanes in the city.

“Every ride is kind of like an adventure,” says Orekhov.

“You need these types of activities in your life. And it’s lovely, especially in Victoria.”

Aaron Guillen