If you’ve ever been stuck in traffic in a busy city, with the minutes ticking by and your stress levels rising, you know how frustrating it can be. The constant stop-and-go in traffic wastes time and drains our energy, and we don’t even get to where we want to be in time. Even though we’re not always bound to a specific schedule or location, finding a transportation solution that can help us get around quickly and efficiently is essential.

Even if you don’t necessarily need a commuting solution, you can certainly benefit from owning an electric scooter. Whether it’s for a fun ride around the neighbourhood or to run quick errands, this particular means of transport combines convenience, speed and environmental sustainability all in one.

How Do I Choose an Electric Scooter?

When you’re browsing through easy-to-navigate online scooters, most of the options available might seem eerily similar to each other. Sure, they all have two wheels, a handlebar and an electric motor. However, some key features determine how each electric scooter performs, and by considering these factors, you can decide which one fits your lifestyle best.

Design Features

This umbrella term encompasses several physical characteristics to pay attention to when sifting through electric scooters. It goes beyond the aesthetic appeal and focuses on functionality – since these two aspects go hand in hand in terms of overall performance.

The first feature to look into is the size of the wheels. Bigger wheels generally offer smoother rides, and if you’re planning on using your scooter to navigate through bumpy roads or uneven sidewalks, this can be quite useful. Additionally, larger wheels tend to have better traction, which is essential for overall stability.

Another aspect to look into is the tyre type. Most models come with either pneumatic or airless tyres, both of which have pros and cons. Pneumatic options, for example, provide better shock absorption and traction but require regular maintenance, while airless varieties are virtually maintenance-free but offer less cushioning.

As far as suspension goes, some scooters offer full suspension systems, while others only have front or rear suspensions. Full suspension systems generally provide a smoother ride on rough terrains and absorb shock better than partial suspension options. They normally consist of a combination of springs and shock absorbers, which work together to minimise the impact of bumps and vibrations.

Additionally, the brakes are a priority in terms of safety and control. Disc brakes are generally the most efficient, providing strong stopping power even in wet conditions. However, drum brakes, which are more common in electric scooters, also offer decent stopping power and require less maintenance.

Finally, rear and front lights can significantly enhance visibility and safety, especially if you plan on using your scooter at night. Ingress protection (IP) ratings are also worth considering, as they indicate the level of protection against dust and water. A higher IP rating means your scooter is better protected against potential damage from external elements.

Top Speed

Full-throttle speed values determine how fast an electric scooter can go. On average, most models have a top speed in the 24 – 40 km/h (15 – 25 mph) range. However, some high-performance scooters can reach speeds of up to 80 km/h (50 mph). Keep in mind that top speed often depends on the weight and size of the rider, as well as terrain conditions.

You want to hit the sweet spot where you can ride in a bike lane or on the road without feeling like you are too slow, but also not too fast that it becomes a safety hazard. It’s important to check your local regulations regarding speed limits for electric scooters and follow them accordingly.

Motor Capacity

When browsing through online scooters, you need to look into the motor capacity. Most options have brushless DC motors that range from 250 W to 2000 W. The higher the motor capacity, the more powerful and efficient the scooter will be, but it will also impact its price.

Ideally, anywhere between 400-500 W should be enough for most commuters, but if you have to deal with hills or need more torque, you could go with 1000 W or higher. However, keep in mind that a more powerful motor usually means a heavier scooter as well.

Weight Limit

User weight limit is another important factor to consider when buying an electric scooter. Most scooters can accommodate riders weighing between 100-120 kg (220-265 lbs), but it’s always best to check the specific weight limit for the model you are interested in.

If you are above the recommended weight limit, not only will your scooter be less efficient and have a shorter range, but you also run the risk of damaging the scooter and voiding its warranty. You should always follow the manufacturer’s guidelines to ensure safe and proper use.

Battery Range

Imagine commuting to work one morning, and your scooter runs out of battery halfway through the trip. This is both inconvenient and frustrating, which is why considering the battery range is crucial when purchasing an electric scooter.

Naturally, weather conditions and user weight will affect the battery range, but on average, most scooters can cover a distance of 15-20 km (9-12 miles) per charge. You should have some leeway in the range, as you might need to take a detour or have extra weight on the scooter.

If you have a longer commute or want to be sure that you won’t run out of battery mid-trip, opt for a scooter with a higher range. Some models can cover up to 40 km (24 miles) per charge, but keep in mind that this will also depend on the circumstances.

Maintenance and Repair

Like any other vehicle or electronic device, electric scooters require maintenance and repairs from time to time. Before making a purchase, it’s essential to consider the availability of spare parts and the cost of repairs for your chosen model.

Some manufacturers offer warranties that cover certain parts or services for a specific period, while others may not have easily accessible spare parts. You should invest in a scooter with reliable customer support and available spare parts, as it can save you from headaches and additional expenses down the line.