What To Look For In An E-Scooter: A Guide For The Unacquainted
Are you looking to purchase a new e-scooter? Are you overwhelmed by everything there is to know, before making a suitable choice? From design to performance to maintenance, there are a number of critical factors to keep in mind while purchasing your vehicle. Before we deep-dive into those, let’s briefly touch upon what electric scooters are, why they’re being touted as a giant leap towards reducing climate impacts, and how they have proven to be both bank and earth friendly!
Electric scooters fall under the larger bracket of Electric Vehicles (EVs) and are two-wheeled drives that can be electrically charged, and require no fuel consumption. The electricity is stored on a rechargeable battery, which can be charged by plugging into standard outlets. Most of them are powered by Lithium ion batteries that drive the motors.
They come in two variants:
- High Speed Electric Scooters (offer speed up to 70 KMPH)
- Low Speed Electric Scooters (offer speed up to 25 KMPH and often don’t require a license)
Governments globally have been encouraging the proliferation of electric vehicles, and have even introduced tax relief and scrappage policies to increase purchases. Electric scooters, like other electric vehicles, eliminate fuel consumption and bring down the carbon footprint of scooters.
Now, let’s look at some important things to consider while buying an e-scooter:
Presumably, price becomes the deciding factor when it comes to buying almost any premium product, and electric scooters are no exception to this. Although the initial purchasing cost is high for an electric vehicle, largely due to the included rechargeable battery, over time it proves to be significantly more cost-effective. Also, there are different models with varying levels of features and add-ons. This also impacts pricing.
Scooter Range And Battery Life:
With the scooter range, one can know how much distance it’s possible to cover, before the battery runs out. Range coverage is dependent on several factors such as weight of the scooter, weather conditions, average speed, motor power, and so on. Although the top scooters can let you ride an upwards of 100 kms, this limit is highly correlated to the battery life of your bike. Battery life is calculated in terms of the number of charging cycles a scooter can undergo, and with time this capacity tends to dwindle. Depending on the type (i.e. lithium, lead or nickel), batteries can hold up to 300-500 charge cycles. The best ones are capable of preserving up to 1000 charging cycles. It is also important to ensure that the battery is waterproof, shock-proof and replaceable.
Quality And Make:
It goes without saying, quality and safety should be prioritized above everything else and shouldn’t be compromised or overlooked no matter what. There are 3 main components whose quality you must thoroughly scrutinize:
- Tyres: These are usually one of three types, i.e. air-filled, airless or a combination of rubber and air pockets. Each of these offers different benefits and have their own limitations. Depending on what kind of terrain you wish to ride your bike on, you may decide to pick one over the other.
- Wheels: It has been argued that alloy wheels work better than spoke ones, especially for electric two-wheelers. This is primarily because they’re lightweight, yet sturdy enough to endure stressors from multiple directions. However, in terms of costs, alloy wheels are much more expensive.
- Brakes: Scooters use either drum, rim or disk brakes. Disc brakes are normally recommended, as they provide strong braking power, especially on rough roads.
When buying an e-scooter in India, it is absolutely necessary to look for models that offer detachable batteries. Lithium batteries tend to have the advantage of being removable, and are compatible enough to be charged on the move. In case of a low battery, it becomes easy to charge the detachable battery irrespective of the location.
Motor power is another important parameter to factor in, while buying an electric bike. It can be quite challenging to ride an electric scooter on rough terrains and slopes, if it consists of low power. In a majority of electric scooter models, motor power is around 200 watts on an average. Anything upwards of 250 watts is recommended, especially if you intend to use your bike on inclined roads or uneven terrains.
While most of these are add-ons and aren’t necessarily needed for the basic functioning of an electric scooter, they’re nice to have for the price paid. BGauss E-Scooters come with a range of such intelligent features including smartphone connectivity, USB ports, LED navigation dashboard, anti-theft sensors and alarms, “find your vehicle” feature, etc.
To wrap up, now that the environmental benefits of e-scooters are aplenty, it’s now a matter of building an ecosystem around the offering, one that can ensure accessibility to all. What remains to be seen is how quickly we are able to adapt to the idea and usage of it. What is known for certain is that, we must!