First of all comes the cost of the bicycle. A good quality bicycle for everyday use would cost at least $600. Then you have to add on the cost of the battery and motor. If you want these parts to be reliable for every day use, add another $1000 unless you don't care if your bike breaks down after a couple of months. If you can buy a scooter for the same amount, fine, that is another choice, just don't expect that what amounts to an electrically powered scooter will be any cheaper. However that electric scooter can be refuelled in your home, you don't have to buy smelly gasoline and it will run quietly. Some places allow ebikes to use bicycle paths, but you would not be allowed to use a gas powered scooter on those paths
Because companies know people are caught up in an ebike fad. However like all products in time as technology improves there will become more and more manufacturers. Then competition will drive the price down.
If you're able to, you can build your own for less than $1200 that'll far out perform the factory ones costing many times more. The bike in the picture is a mid drive using a 3 speed internal geared hub.
Well...duh! How long has the internal combustion engine been around? A loooooong time. That's why prices for small 49cc scooters aren't that high. How long have vehicles been powered by batteries? Not that long. It's still an emerging industry. That's why the prices are still high.
To look at it another way, the price for an Apple Macintosh PowerBook in 1991 was $2,299. Adjusted for inflation, today it would cost $4,020. But that wouldn't be right. Technology has come a long way since 1991 & the price for a basic laptop P/C is just a few hundred bucks. [ 247wallst.com Link ]
And what's wrong with $1,500 for a quality bike? In 2011, I spent $1,200 on a touring bike I PEDAL around on. The day I need an e-bike, start digging my grave.
cause people like to make money by selling them
The big batteries are very expensive these days. Battery technology is evolving rapidly today. Tesla is building a billion-dollar factory in Reno to make batteries and I know a lot more plants are opening in China. They have to pay for those somehow. In a few years prices will come down.
Look at the ads for different e-bikes and you'll see there's a correlation between battery size (speed, distance) and price.