If you are shopping for a brand new personal transportation vehicle, you may be comparing electric vs gas scooters. After all, the best electric scooters may lack certain functionalities available with gas-powered scooters. Keep reading to learn about the differences between the two types of vehicles.

KEY TAKEAWAYS:

  • Electric scooters tend to be cheaper than gas scooters, and electricity is less expensive than fuel.
  • Gas-powered scooters travel much faster than e-scooters, however, occasionally reaching speeds up to 100 mph.
  • Gas-powered scooters are noisier, heavier, but more durable than electric scooters.

Differences Between Electric Scooters and Gas Scooters

The obvious difference is the power source, as electric scooters are powered via a standard wall outlet and a gas-powered scooter needs regular fill-ups at the fuel center. For continued use, electricity will be cheaper than petrol or other forms of gasoline. As for riding, the experience will be similar, with differences much slighter than when comparing go-karts vs electric scooters.

Here are some other ways in which e-scooters and fuel-powered scooters differ.

Maximum Speed

If you have a need for speed, you may want to check out gas scooters. Electric motors typically max out at 30 miles per hour, with models falling in the 20 to 22 mph category. Gas scooters, on the other hand, can travel as fast as 100 mph, depending on the engine size. The speed difference is stark here, much starker than if you compare electric unicycles vs scooters.

Of course, gas-powered scooters that can travel beyond 20 or 30 miles per hour will be subject to local rules and regulations. In other words, you will need to have a valid driver’s license or motorcycle license and insurance in order to legally operate one.

Insider Tip

Be sure to wear the appropriate safety gear, no matter which type of scooter you choose. This includes a helmet, knee pads, arm pads, and more.

Durability

The durability of your scooter will largely depend on its make and model, as each scooter is built differently. Having said that, gas scooters will tend to be more durable than e-scooters. This is due primarily to the aforementioned speed boost available with gas scooters. The faster a scooter can go, the more durable it needs to be in case there is an accident or a related mishap. Still, a high-end electric vehicle can rival fuel-based scooters when it comes to durability. Check the specs and components.

Safety

Electric scooters are safer than gas scooters for a number of reasons. They don’t typically travel as fast, so if you get in an accident you are likely to experience fewer consequences. Additionally, gas scooters feature a combustible engine, which is a potential danger. Electric scooters, do include lithium-ion battery packs, which have had issues with catching on fire in the past. These issues have largely been resolved, but you should still source an e-scooter from a reliable manufacturer to ensure they don’t use sub-standard batteries.

Environmental Impact

If you are concerned about carbon emissions and related negative environmental impacts, the e-scooter is the clear winner. Gas scooters are powered via messy and environmentally distasteful fossil fuels, whereas e-scooters are powered by electricity. With battery power, there are no pollutants released into the environment. It must be noted, however, that even though gas scooters do damage the environment slightly, the impacts are much lower when compared to standard cars and trucks.

Convenience and Range

An e-scooter’s range will be primarily determined by its integrated battery, and these ranges max out at around 50 to 60 miles before needing a recharge. On the other hand, the fuel tanks inside of a gas scooter can hold around two to three gallons of petrol. That doesn’t sound like a lot when compared to a car, but gas scooters are relatively light and compact. So, yeah, they get almost 100 miles per gallon. That comes out to three or four times the range found with your average e-scooter. In other words, electric scooters are good for short commutes while gas scooters are better for long trips.

Noise

Gas scooters are much louder than e-scooters, which may be an issue for some. If you are concerned with noise pollution, go with an electric model.

F.A.Q.S

Are electric bikes a smarter choice?

Electric bikes are a good choice for simple commutes, but electric scooters tend to be more compact and weigh less. Also, fuel-based scooters can go much faster and ride longer before needing a fill-up.


Do I need a license and insurance to ride an e-moped?

For vehicles with electric motors, it depends on local rules and regulations. Check with your area’s regulatory agency. It may also depend on speed and engine size and whether or not the vehicle is rated for a public highway.


Electronic bikes vs mopeds: which way to go?

If they both have electric motors, pick one based on personal preference. Mopeds will go faster and feature a more robust full-throttle mode, but will also be pricier.



STAT: In 1986, Go-Ped introduced the first modern stand-up scooters, the “Roadster” and the “Sport”. (source)

Lawrence Bonk

Lawrence Bonk is a copywriter with a decade of experience in the tech space, with columns appearing in Engadget, Huffington Post and CBS, among others. He has a cat named Cinnamon.

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