Best Lightweight Electric Scooters

Best Lightweight Electric Scooters

Remember when you were a kid and you used to ride a scooter to get to your friend’s house or to the park because it was quick and fun? Well, some things haven’t changed because and increasing amount of adults are choosing to buy an electric scooter to get around.

Electric scooters are a great ‘last mile’ solution and buying a lightweight e-scooter doesn’t mean you have to compromise on power or speed. In fact, the best electric scooters are practical and can be folded in half to make it easy for you to carry up the stairs or on public transport.

Technology for electric scooters is improving all the time, giving people a much smoother and faster ride. While walking is relaxing, it’s more time consuming, and in our modern society whizzing down the road at 25 km/h will allow people to commute faster and get more cars off the road. Imagine all the time you’d save if you weren’t stuck in a car during peak hour traffic in the city.

What makes an electric scooter lightweight?

The average electric scooter weighs between 12-16 kg but many are still foldable and easy to carry up stairs. There are many things that make an e-scooter lightweight such as:

  • Frame material
  • Tyre size and type
  • Motor
  • Battery

Did you know the lightest electric scooter ever designed only weighed 4 kg and was designed to fit in a backpack? The ZAR e-scooter started from a Kickstarter campaign and was made with portability in mind. The scooter was foldable so it was easy to fit into a backpack to transport on public transport and even on planes.

What materials are used to make an electric scooter?

Electric scooters are usually made from alloy material (mixed metal) because it gives greater strength and resistance to corrosion. Common materials used include: 

  • aluminium; 
  • titanium; and 
  • carbon fibre.

    What is carbon fibre?

    Carbon Fibre Reinforced Polymer (CFRP) or Carbon fibre as it’s commonly known, is incredibly strong and stiff for its weight, which allows very lightweight frames to be built.

    Carbon fibre is anisotropic. What does that mean? It means its properties are dependent on the direction of load. And what does that mean? It means frames can be quite flexible and strong in the design direction.

    Carbon fibre is made up of microscopic fibres aligned and held in a resin matrix. The fibres are extremely thin and hard to see with the naked eye making them thinner than a human hair. They are bundled together to form a tow. 

    Together, the fibres work like ropes providing most of the strength. The fibres can withstand tension but would crumple if compressed. 

    What are the advantages of carbon fibre?

    The key advantage of carbon fibre is that layups can be made to achieve specific ride properties. More reinforcement of the frame can be done by adding more material in specific areas. Different scooter models can be modified to favour stiffness or compliance for more race or comfort focussed frames.

    Another advantage of carbon fibre is that it’s able to dampen vibrations. The resin does this by filtering out high frequency vibration such as road noise. More vibrations are able to be absorbed due to the “rubberising” of the resin. Metals, in contrast, are unable to dampen vibrations because they act like springs.

    Carbon frames are the lightest, so if it’s a lightweight electric scooter you’re looking for then choose one with a carbon fibre frame. 

    What are the disadvantages of carbon fibre?

    The main limitation of carbon fibre is that it’s a brittle material. When a metal reaches its limits, it will bend before failing completely, whereas carbon fibre will just suddenly fail. However, failure of carbon fibre is highly unlikely. 

    Lightweight carbon fibre scooter folded

    What is Aluminium?

    Alloyed aluminium can be as strong as steel, but at a third of the weight, it’s much lighter. It’s suitable for making many vehicles such as cars, boats, planes and electric scooters. Aluminium is used extensively in the transport industry due to its unique range of properties. It is a versatile metal and can be used in complex designs. It’s also a great conductor of heat and electricity and can be used in items such as LED lights, electrical products, computer motherboards, etc. 

    You can find aluminium in everyday objects including cans, foils, window frames, beer kegs and kitchen utensils. It’s low density, non-toxic and can be easily cast. Aluminium is also the most abundant metal in the Earth’s crust at 8.1%.

    What are the advantages of aluminium?

    Aluminium is durable as it’s weather-proof, corrosion-resistant and is not affected by UV rays, so it has a long lifespan. It’s also a very flexible material and can be easily shaped in different industrial metal work processes such as rolling, extrusion, forging and casting so it has unlimited design potential.

     Another great advantage of aluminium is its lightness without compromising on safety or comfort. Its natural oxide coating is a barrier against the elements such as water. Lots of marine equipment is made of aluminium for this reason.

    It’s environmentally friendly as it’s 100% recyclable and uses only 5% of the energy to make the original product. Currently around 95% of aluminium in cars is collected and recycled, and accounts for over 50% of the material value of the vehicle once it’s traded in.

    As production of aluminium has advanced, it’s become more affordable and more adaptable with breakthroughs happening that would have seemed impossible only a few years previously.

    What are the disadvantages of aluminium?

    There aren’t many disadvantages to aluminium, but one is it’s more rare and more expensive than steel. It can also be abrasive to tool, where the aluminium oxide that forms upon it is prone to severe spring back.

    What is Titanium?

    Titanium is used in a wide variety of applications including, welded pipes, aircraft, naval vessels and even aircraft because it’s lightweight and temperature-resistant. It is silver in colour and is characterised by its low tension and high strength. The unique properties of titanium make it ideal for a range of different applications. Titanium can also be used in joint replacement implants, such as the ball-and-socket hip joint.

    What are the advantages of titanium?

    Titanium’s strength is its biggest advantage over other metals. It’s one of the most durable metals on the planet so it’s used in many industrial applications. Titanium has the highest strength-to-density ratio of any metallic element on the periodic table which is why it’s the preferred choice of many professionals.

    It’s also naturally resistant to rust and corrosion. Other metals when exposed to moisture can go through a process called oxidation, which leads to corrosion. However, this does not occur in titanium making it a great material choice for something designed to be long-lasting like an electric scooter.

    What are the disadvantages of titanium?

    A limitation of titanium is that it’s difficult to cast. Casting is a process where a liquid material is poured into a mould, which contains a hollow cavity of the desired shape and then left to solidify. This doesn’t happen with titanium due to its strength. Other metals like aluminium or iron do this much better. In order to cast titanium it usually has to be machined to shape from a forging which is an expensive process. Forging is a process where a metal object is made or shaped by heating it in a fire or furnace and hammering it.   

    Titanium is also quite expensive compared to other types of metals. Steel, iron, aluminium can be bought cheaper. While it’s not considered rare, it is much rarer than other metals causing the price of it to go up.

    Are lightweight e-scooters less powerful?

    In many cases, lightweight scooters are more likely to travel less on a single charge, so it’s important to pay attention to battery capacity. However, as engineering and technology improve, putting together a powerful and lightweight vehicle has become possible. 

    Producing strong, lightweight objects is a balancing act. Lighter materials tend to be weaker, and stronger materials tend to be a lot heavier and sometimes brittle. For example, if you try and bend a window pane with your hand it won’t snap, but if you drop it on the ground it will shatter into a million pieces. Therefore, when it comes to designing transport vehicles, materials will often be mixed to form a stronger compound.

    There are people who are willing to compromise on a lighter electric scooter over a more powerful one because it’s easier to carry around and store away. However, for those who live in apartments and have less space, and are therefore looking for something small that they can put away when it’s not in use, foldable and lightweight scooters are great options. That being said, we are also starting to see electric scooter models like the Raine One that are not compromising weight for speed and vice versa.

    Lightweight electric scooter being ridden

    How do electric scooters reduce their weight?

    Well it all comes down to the engineering of the electric scooter that helps reduce its weight. We spoke before about the materials that make an electric scooter lightweight. Engineers are constantly finding new ways of making e-scooters lighter and more powerful.

    New battery technology is making scooters lighter. Lithium is light, so many electric scooter companies are using lithium ion batteries to reduce the total weight of their scooters. Lithium batteries are also easy to recharge and need very little maintenance. The downside to these batteries is they are expensive to manufacture -  about 40% higher in cost than nickel-cadmium and the battery can age even if not in use. Scooters should therefore be stored in a cool place to keep the battery from deteriorating faster. 

    Can you fold an electric scooter?

    For many electric scooter riders, they not only want a light model, but also one that is compact and can be easily carried and stored. Cities around the world are trying to stop people driving into the centre of town for work, so electric scooters are a great option, especially if you work in a small office. You can simply fold it up and put it under your desk out of the way and charge it while you’re working. Many cities have dramatically increased the price of parking too, so riding an electric scooter to the train station is a much cheaper option.

    Another advantage of foldable electric scooters is that they almost always have significantly improved wheels, suspension systems and larger standing space. Many also feature overhauled braking mechanisms and quicker recharge time.

    Not all electric scooters are foldable, but there are many available on the market that are. E-scooters that are more lightweight tend to be foldable as they are easier to carry. Many people who are choosing to buy electric scooters are looking for one that is foldable because it makes their commute even easier. A foldable electric scooter should be able to fit in the boot of your car easily and be light enough to carry.

     If you buy an electric scooter that is foldable, make sure you read the instructions on how to fold it so you do it properly. You may think that a folding electric scooter will add more time on to your day, especially if you’re running late in the morning, but they take mere seconds to unfold. Some e-scooters even have a button you can push to fold/unfold it, so you don’t even need to do anything yourself.

    Foldable electric scooter

    Can I damage my electric scooter by folding it?

    If you fold it correctly, then you shouldn’t cause any damage to your electric scooter. Of course only fold it or unfold it when you need to use it. Even though electric scooters may seem like an adult toy, they serve a purpose, and to maintain the longevity of your scooter, you should treat it with care.

    Always read the manual that comes with your electric scooter. If you lose it, there are plenty of videos on YouTube to help you. 

    Are electric scooters suitable for kids?

    There are some people who seek a lightweight electric scooter as they believe it will be more suitable for kids. There are electric scooters made for both adults and children, but definitely consider more carefully when buying for a child. Make sure the child is comfortable with riding a manual scooter before letting them ride an electric powered one because they go much faster. It’s important they develop the motor skills needed to steer and push a scooter on their own before they ride a more sophisticated model.

    Most places only recommend children eight and above to ride an electric scooter. Child-friendly electric scooters are usually much less powerful than adult ones and have lower battery lives. Make sure you can keep an eye on your child when they first start riding it or join them when they go riding to ensure they don’t injure themselves. Also make sure you check your local riding regulations as there may be restrictions on the minimum riding age for your area.

    What are the main advantages of a lightweight electric scooter?

    Save money on your commute

    Petrol prices, toll roads, parking prices, finding car parking, I could go on. Driving is stressful especially when you’re going into the city. Why spend hundreds of dollars a year on paying for petrol when you can ride an electric scooter?

    Some scooters are built to have a range of 40 km or more, and when you’re at work you can charge it for your ride home.  

    Portability and convenience

    Many lightweight electric scooter models are foldable so you can take it on the bus, store it in the hallway or park it somewhere out of the way.

    They are the perfect to take with you onto public transport to then use as a ‘last mile solution’.

    Save time

    Save time on trying to find a space in a crowded parking lot by riding an electric scooter. They’re easy to ride and make it easy to navigate peak hour traffic. It’ll also cut down your time getting to and from public transport, especially when compared to walking.

    If you’re not willing to commit to buying an electric scooter just yet, then test out a shared e-scooter scheme if one is available in your city or town. Companies like Bird and Lime have run shared electric scooter schemes in different cities around the world with a lot of success, and they are a great way to try before you buy.

    Raine One Lightweight Scooter being carried

    The Raine One is an excellent lightweight scooter

    The Raine One may be one of the best lightweight electric scooters available on the Australian market. Its cutting-edge technology, foldability and lightweight frame make it stand out.

    What are the features that make Raine One lightweight?

    Here is a list of features that make Raine One, one of the most lightweight electric scooters available on the market today.

    Frame

    The material used for the Raine One is aluminium and carbon fibre composite. As mentioned earlier, carbon fibre is extremely light and reduces vibration noises, while aluminium is versatile, in abundance and easy to cast. Together it makes for a great combination for this electric scooter.

    Battery

    The Raine One has a Lithium ion battery and can be fully charged in 5 hours. It has a range of 40 km, which will allow for about 2-3 hours of riding time.

    Weight

    At only 12 kg, the Raine One is much lighter than other e-scooters on the market. Despite its carbon fibre and aluminium frame only weighing 12 kg, it has the strength to support a maximum load of 120 kg.

    Foldable electric scooter

    You can carry the Raine One e-scooter anywhere. Its X-system fold with carbon fibre elements makes it super light and compact without compromising on strength. You can put it under your desk or carry it on public transport. In one simple easy fold motion, it’s done. 

    Raine One electric scooter standing

    How does Raine One compare to other electric vehicle models?

    Well, let’s have a look. There are many electric scooters available on the market so we’ll just compare the Raine One with a few of the more popular models.

    Xiaomi M365

    Some of the benefits of this scooter:

    • Award-winning design
    • Developed with eco-friendly technology
    • 30 km range
    • ABS anti-lock brakes
    • Aluminium alloy frame
    • Two different speed modes
    • Excellent brake quality

    How does the Raine One fare against Xiaomi M365?

    The Raine One electric scooter has a better range – 40 km as opposed to 30 km – so you can go further. Another advantage Raine One has over Xiaomi is its lights. The Raine One has customisable LED lights (front, rear and brakes) whereas Xiaomi has regular lights. The Xiaomi also doesn’t have suspension, nor does it have GPS. The Raine One’s top speed is also 50 km/h whereas Xiaomi’s is 25 km/h.

    What similarities do they have?

    • Charge time of 5 hours
    • Foldable
    • Similar weight (Raine One 12 kg, Xiaomi 12.5 kg)
    • Front and rear brakes

    You can read more about the Xiaomi M365 here.

    Bird One

    Some of the benefits of this scooter:

    • 474W battery
    • 48 km range
    • Quick charge time (4-6 hours)
    • Rear drum brakes
    • 30 km range

    How does the Raine One fare against Bird One?

    The range of Bird One is better than Raine One’s (40 km) but the Raine One does better in other aspects. Bird One isn’t foldable and is heavier than Raine One at 17.5 kg. Raine One does better on hill climbs, has a smart lock system and has high grip tyres.

    What similarities do they have?

    • Charge time
    • GPS and app connection
    • Wheel size
    • LED lighting

    You can read more about the Bird One here. 

    Boosted Rev

    Some of the benefits of this scooter:

    • Good braking system
    • User-friendly design
    • Powerful motor
    • Easy to set up
    • Customisable
    • Easy to use

    How does the Raine One fare against Boosted Rev?

    While the charging time is much faster on the Boosted Rev (3 hours), the Raine One does better in other aspects such as range and top speed. Boosted Rev has a top speed of 39 km/h with a range of 35 km which is lower than Raine One. Another downside to the Boosted Rev is its 20.9 kg weight, which makes it considerably heavier than Raine One, but it is foldable.

    What similarities do they have?

    • Hill climb
    • Foldable
    • Wheel size
    • Price

    You can read more about the Boosted Rev here. 

    Ninebot Max

    Some of the benefits of this scooter:

    • Great range (65 km)
    • Powerful battery (551W)
    • Powerful motor (350W)
    • Good for hills (up to 11.9 degrees)

    How does the Raine One fare against Ninebot Max?

    While the Ninebot Max has a larger range than Raine One, its top speed is only 30 km/h compared to Raine One which is 50 km/h. The Ninebot Max also has a longer charge time of 6 hours with no suspension or smart lock. It’s another heavier model at 18.7 kg but is able to be folded.

    What similarities do they have?

    • GPS and app connection
    • Foldable
    • Wheel size
    • Hill climb

    You can read more about the Ninebot Max here. 

    Overall, lightweight electric scooters are a convenient way of getting around. We recommend choosing a model that is lightweight, but does not compromise on strength or performance.


    Leave a comment

    Please note, comments must be approved before they are published