Electric Scooter Vs Electric Bike: What is Best?


Why Using an Electric Scooter is Becoming so Popular, even over e-Bikes?

Some people like an electric scooter for their economical driving. They are also massive fans of these vehicles’ ability to fold up for easy transport and storage, drive around the city without emitting any emissions and without making any noise.

Others prefer electric bikes. These are people who have grown tired of being stuck in traffic for hours. Such experiences have forced them to praise – and explore – other avenues like E-bikes, which help their riders slalom through rows of stuck vehicles within minutes.

Which of these two people are you? Are you pro electric scooter or in favor of electric bikes?

That’s what this article aims to find out. We’re going to compare both these modern means of transportation to help you pick one or the other for your daily or weekend use.


Electric Scooter Vs Electric Bike Spotlight

Here’s how both of them compare on multiple counts.

 

#1 Intended Audience

Electric scooters are designed with a city commute in mind.

They are best for those who’d use them to travel between home and office, and not much else. Mainly because the electric scooters’ batteries can only last between 10 and 20 miles (32 km/h).

Electric bikes, on the contrary, offer the best of both worlds. They are as great for daily commuting purposes since they are good to cover long distances.

On top of that, thanks to the wider tires and other shock absorption features, they are more versatile to drive on any terrain; something that is limited in scooters.

 

#2 Portability

In terms of portability, an electric scooter are easy to carry. That is because they are somehow lightweight and can be carried around with ease.

Easy electric scooter foldable photo by Okai Vehicles
Photo by Okai Vehicles

But also because you can fold them up with no issue (if that feature is available). This allows you to stow them in your car’s trunk or on a subway seat when you aren’t using them.

Most of the e-Bikes don’t offer this facility. You cannot just fold up the frame and carrying it with you inside the office.

Unless it is a foldable electric bike, of course.

You are thus left with little choice but to secure the e-bike against a metal pole outside, thereby exposing it to the risk of theft and outside elements.

 

#4 Comfort

Ironically enough, e-Scooters aren’t exactly the most comfortable means of transportation.

You might end up spraining your legs if you stand on their deck for long. Especially if the road between home and the office is uneven, bumpy or full of potholes.

Electric bikes offer a much more comfortable experience.

As mentioned before, they have different adjuncts, such as handy shock absorption systems and a saddle, to tackle any type of terrain. On top of that, your body adjust much better to a sitting position than standing up.

 

#5 Average speed

Looking at what some manufacturers offer, motorized scooters the average speed is around 16 mph (25 km/h).

That isn’t to say that none of them can run faster. There are models out there with an astronomical top speed of 100 km/hr. It’s just that such super-speedy models are in the minority.

All comes down to safety really. Why to bother having a super fast scooter if the likelihood of an accident is higher?

Electric bikes generally tend to be quicker and have more torque.

Class 1 and Class 2 models can clock a top speed of 20 mph (32 km/h) under the law governing electric bicycles. Class 3 electric bikes, which are required to have a speedometer on the handlebar, are permitted to cover up to 28 mph (45 km/h).


Read More: Electric Bikes Explained Guide to understand ebike classifications.


 

#6 Maximum range

Electric scooters’ batteries die down much quickly. You’d be hard-pressed to find a model offering more than 40 mph of range.

This is because they have a small battery built (which restricts onboard battery’s size) and they don’t force you to do part of the work, kind of the same principle of electric skateboards (but e-boards could have better range and speed).

Electric bikes, which do ask you to pedal if you want to cover long distances, have an average range of 40 to 100 miles.

The range is so diverse because a variety of factors are involved, including rider weight, battery size, battery type, average speed, terrain, and more.


Read More: eBike Batteries Guide for Beginners.


 

#7 Rider’s weight

e Scooters’ carrying capacity mostly ranges between 220lbs (100kg) and 265lbs (120kg). That doesn’t mean that there aren’t any electric scooters for heavy adults out there.

There are manufacturers whose e-scooters can carry as much as 550lbs of weight.

Electric bikes also provide a similar weight-carrying range. While some of them can withstand up to 250lbs, others can carry riders weighing as much as 550lbs.

It should go without saying that models offering above-average weight range won’t come cheap.

 

#8 Price tag

Experts tell us that the average price of an electric scooter is somewhere around $300. Some of the high-end models, which are designed for heavy adults, can touch the $1000 mark too.

e-Bikes, especially those that come with all bells and whistles, force you to break the bank.

We are yet to see any e-bikes with worth-having features costing less than $1000, with most models you see on the road costing somewhere from $1500 to $4000 easy.


Frequent Asked Questions

We know that covering all points is not simple but at least you could have some answers to most common questions here.

 

Q: Do I need a license for an electric scooter?

Most US states don’t require you to have a driver’s license for an electric scooter. Some, like California, have stricter rules.

The Golden State requires riders to have a learner’s permit or a driver’s license, including wearing a helmet at all times.

e scooter for heavy adults photo by Marek Rucinski
Photo by Marek Rucinski. Most likely, they don’t have a license.

If you’re living in the United Kingdom, your driving license must have a category Q entitlement. Only then you’re legally allowed to use a scooter.

Lastly, in Australia most states require riders to have one or the other type of license:

  • Victoria requires users to have a license if riding on the streets, or not, if on private property.
  • Queensland is chilled and only requires users to be above 16 years old, and the pedalling of the person should do the job first before the motor.
  • In NSW, all the requirements apply and the total weight of the system is no more than 35kg.

 

Q: How fast can electric scooter go?

Rion RE90, the fastest electric scooter on the market, has a top speed around 100 km/h.

Safety is definitely not much in mind for these guys!

Even when you do account for the rules – which limit it to a top speed of around 80mph, it’s still insanely fast considering you’ve nothing between you and anything else when you’re riding it.

But taking this model aside, you will find an average speed of approx 25 km/h.

 

Q: How fast can electric bikes go?

Voxx Wattman is the fastest electric bike on the planet so far. Thanks to its electric motor – which produces 362hp and a 140kg battery – that churns out 15.9kwh of current, it successfully achieved a top speed of 408 km/h on the track in 2020.


Read More: Electric Bicycle Motor Guide


Looking at our electric bike motor guide, the top speed would depend on the type of motor used, which in turn is dependent on the local governing laws.

In general, an assisted bicycle cutoff speed would be around 25km/h. Of course, you can go faster by using your legs.


Electric Scooter Vs Electric Bike Final Words

Motorized scooters deserve your attention if you want something that doesn’t come with an astronomical price tag, is less expensive to maintain, and are going to be used only for the daily commute.

They are also easy to carry and store and can withstand the weight of heavier adults too.

However, suppose you regularly go out on long-distance rides, can afford to spend extra and want something more comfortable to ride on. In that case, you might want to prefer an electric bike.

All in all, there are so many factors that could balance things one way or the other; the main point is that an electric scooter is a good alternative for a tight budget and quick ride.


 

Paul T

Hi all! I'm Paul, founder and driver of Electric Bike Advisor (EBA). Learning from scratch by repairing and putting together my standard bicycle, I thought it was time to know more about the electric world. Enjoy reading my most honest point of view through our reviews, and learning from our guides, which are researched by professionals in the industry.