Treehugger founder Graham Hill shares his thoughts on riding around San Francisco on an electric assist bike.
His experience matches my own when Pacific let me try the Schwinn Tailwind for an extended period. It's heavy, but you usually don't really notice the weight even with the motor off. These are not 'go fast' bikes but purely utilitarian bikes. Most people don't notice the motor or battery at all -- in fact, most of the attention I got on the Tailwind was from the looks of the bike itself.
I think Graham is right in noting that not everybody likes to bike for the sheer enjoyment of it, so a little push might be helpful for them.