e-scooter, the practical companion
for short distances
Since the Small Electric Vehicles Ordinance (eKFV) came into force in Germany on June 15, 2019, e-scooters have fallen into the category of small electric vehicles with an output of up to 500 watts and a maximum speed of 20 km/h. In most European countries they are allowed to drive up to 25 km/h.
In order to be able to drive an e-scooter in public spaces, the vehicle in Germany requires a general operating license and it must have a valid insurance sticker. You can drive an e-scooter from the age of 14. A driving license is not necessary and there is no requirement to wear a helmet as the vehicles do not travel faster than 20 km/h. For your own protection, we generally recommend wearing a helmet. The basic rule is that small electric vehicles must use cycle areas if they are available. If there are no structurally designed cycle paths or cycle lanes, small electric vehicles can also use the road and, outside of town, the hard shoulder. However, the sidewalk remains reserved for pedestrians.
Useful information about the drive, batteries and charging of e-scooters
Most electric scooters for adults are constructed like classic children's scooters and consist of a base, two tires, a handlebar with handlebars and two brakes. The “heart” of the e-scooter is the electric motor with its battery. The motor is usually hidden in the wheel hub and does not disturb the appearance, as does the battery, which is installed below the base of most models. Acceleration is usually done using a twist grip on the scooter handlebars. Below we have compiled further facts about the construction and operation of e-scooters:
Electric scooters, like electric scooters or e-bikes, use an electric drive instead of a gasoline engine. A rechargeable battery - usually a high-performance lithium-ion battery - supplies the motor with energy. If this is exhausted, the performance of the e-scooter decreases or its range decreases. Therefore, the battery must be connected to the power grid at regular intervals in order to be supplied with new energy.
The brakes on the e-scooter are indispensable. It makes sense to have two brakes that function independently of each other, thanks to which safe driving is guaranteed even if one brake fails. Even if the maximum speed for e-scooters is a maximum of 20 km/h: the driving speed should not be underestimated. The braking effect is much stronger due to the smaller wheels than on a bicycle. Models with a rear wheel brake that can be operated with your foot offer maximum driving comfort and more safety than e-scooters with purely handlebar brakes.
The battery is one of the heaviest parts installed on an e-scooter. Since electric motorized scooters generally do not cover long distances, the average range per charge is around 30 km to 50 km. The charging time is significantly shorter than with e-scooters or cars. The battery of an e-scooter can be easily charged at any socket. Depending on the model, the charging time is around 2 to 5 hours.
Weight plays a relevant role when transporting the e-scooter. The small electric vehicles are often folded up, for example when transporting them on a bus or train. Here it helps to choose a vehicle that can be folded easily and quickly. Carbon scooters save weight on the frame, but the batteries are often the heaviest part of the scooter. The total weight that the scooter, including the driver and any luggage, brings onto the road is also important for safety when driving. The load limit recommended by the manufacturer should not be exceeded.
What are the differences between e-scooters and e-scooters?
The legislator in Germany has come up with complex rules for the categorization of so-called light electric vehicles. And unfortunately this also leads to linguistic confusion, as in German the name e-scooter is often confused with the name e-scooter. Here at voylt we always use e-scooter for the kick scooter, i.e. the electric vehicle that does not have a seat and that you stand on. When we call the term e-scooter, we use the English term e-moped.
Basically, one of the most important differences between e-scooters and e-scooters is the requirement to have a driving license. You definitely need a driving license to drive an e-scooter. Permitted driving licenses for the e-scooter include the normal class B car driving license or a class AM moped driving license. If you have a motorcycle license, you can of course also use an e-scooter without any problems. In addition, you can only drive an e-scooter on the street, whereas you can also use your e-scooter on the bike path. However, even the small, maneuverable e-scooters are not allowed to ride on the sidewalk!
Our checklist with tips for your e-scooter purchase
E-scooters are practical companions for the many daily short-distance journeys. They help us switch from cars to more sustainable, smaller vehicles. Electric scooters are particularly suitable for trips of up to 2 km in length. Here is our checklist for buying such an e-scooter.
How would you like to use the e-scooter?
Think about which routes you want to drive. What range do you need? Does the route have gradients? Is the surface level or is it over cobblestones? What do you take with you? So calculate the required payload for your e-scooter. Do you need service and maintenance or can you repair your vehicle or change a tire yourself? And would you like to be informed about your vehicle’s data with an app? These are important aspects that you should consider before purchasing an e-scooter. The same applies to e-scooter drivers.Traffic sailingthat need to be taken into account.
Which equipment details are important?
A 250 W to 500 W motor guarantees fast and reliable driving. The battery should also be powerful and, ideally, removable. Because if it ever fails, you don't have to replace the entire scooter. A hydraulic braking system is considered safe. An additional electronic brake can be usedRecuperationRecover energy and so onRangeof your vehicle. Strong LED lighting provides good vision and visibility. Some manufacturers now equip their vehicles with indicators, which is an important quality feature.
Air-filled tires with tubes are comfortable, but you also risk getting a flat tire. This cannot happen with solid rubber tires, but the driving dynamics are much harder. A well-adjusted suspension of the chassis can also contribute to a comfortable driving experience. The anti-slip footboard is intended to ensure stability. The ideal minimum size is 45 cm long and 17 cm wide. A stable side stand is important. The display should be manageable and well lit. Oneappoffers further insights into the data of your e-scooter.
What makes a good e-scooter?
The range of e-scooters is diverse and the price ranges are large. But expensive doesn't mean good. To buy a good e-scooter, you should pay attention to a few things. Is the e-scooter easy to transport? The individual components should be made of high-quality materials. Intelligent cable routing prevents accidents and protects the cables. A high onetorqueomentensures good driving dynamics because acceleration is then more effective even with higher payloads or on hills. An optimal handlebar height protects your back. That's why it's best to adjust it individually. An integrated anti-theft device is an advantage. And last but not least, an attractive design is also important. It's worth asking whether the vehicle has already received an award for this.
Where do the best e-scooters come from?
Many offers come from Asia. The vehicles are imported and then sold by the regional branches in Europe. There are even bargains to be had in hardware stores or supermarkets. However, service and spare parts for the s vehicles are then more difficult to obtain. It's different for European manufacturers: well-known companies from Europe have also been developing e-mobiles for many yearseKF class with street approval. The Netherlands, Switzerland and Germany are home to successful companies. And new ones are constantly being added.
The manufacturers of e-scooters
The most renowned providers of e-scooters certainly include manufacturers with years of experience in the business. If you have any questions, customer service is available to help and spare parts are available for years. One of the top companies hereSegway / Ninebot, SXT Scooter, Egret(formerly Walberg Urban Electrics), Streetbooster, Xiaomi, Micro, Metz and So Flow.
Dean Kamen developed the first self-balancing wheelchair in the USA and thus laid the foundation for the global brandSegway. His vision was to create environmentally friendly alternative vehicles for short distances. In 2015 the company merged with Ninebot, which is based in Beijing / China. Meanwhile it isSegway NinebotMarket leader in small electric vehicles and offers a diverse product range of e-mobility vehicles. This is also the case with e-scooters. In almost every test report, the Ninebot Max G30D comes off as one of the best e-scooters.
SXT Scooters is a brand of POL-Planet e.K. with headquarters in southern Germany. The company specializes in the import and export of sports and leisure items. The first e-scooter, the SXT 1000 Turbo, was launched at the end of 2011. SXT now produces in 9 production facilities in China. The developers work closely with the Chinese partners on site to monitor quality assurance. The product variety is enormous. Whether the puristic SXT MAX or the SXT Monster EEC – there is something for everyone here.
Egret(formerly Walberg Urban Electrics) is a traditional Hamburg company. Florian Walberg developed the first Egret e-scooter in 2012, when it was not yet legal to drive e-scooters on the road in any European country. Thanks to him and his participation in the decisive committees, e-scooters were legalized and approved across Europe in 2019. After the first series of successes with the Walberg Urban Electrics, Walberg is continuing its success story with Egret e-scooters and launching three promising models in 2022: the Egret Pro, Egert X and Egret One.
Street boosterbased in Herborn have taken micromobility to a new level. The team works with passion on small details and manages to build high-quality vehicles. The Streetbooster One was the first model from the German e-scooter manufacturer. In 2021, the Streetbooster Two will perfect the popular e-vehicle.
Mooviwas one of the first manufacturers to receive road approval from the Federal Motor Transport Authority for folding e-scooters in 2019. Founder Michael Käse attaches great importance to solution-oriented and practical application options. Moovi now offers a patented load carrier system for transporting purchases, suitcases, crates of drinks and more.
Xiaomiis a Chinese electronics manufacturer. Xiaomi has been a global player for affordable high-end smartphones since 2010. But smartwatches, notebooks, smart home products and e-scooters are also part of the company's product range. The company now operates in 80 countries worldwide. The name “Xiaomi” means “millet” and symbolizes the company’s small beginnings, based on a Buddhist saying that even a small grain can be as significant as a mountain.
Wim founded Ouboter in 1996Micro, a Swiss company based in Küsnacht, with the aim of making urban mobility practical and time-saving. But e-scooters shouldn't just be fun, they should also look good. You can do this with a variety of scooters without and with electric drives. This includes, among other things: the Micro Explorer, the Micro Condor II. Micro Merlin Blue, Micro Colibri and the Micro Merlin Gray.
Metzis a traditional German company from Fürth. Actually known as a manufacturer of camera accessories, the company developed the Metz Moover, a robust e-scooter for the city. However, the idea failed to convince market participants and the manufacturer filed for bankruptcy in 2020. However, the company was able to be rebuilt under Metz mobility GmbH and, in addition to producing the Metz Moover, is also dedicated to inductive charging technology for your vehicle. Together with INTIS, Metz is developing “easyCharge”, which should also be suitable for e-scooter models from other manufacturers.
The SwissSo Flow AG offers versatile e-mobility vehicles. The portfolio includes several e-scooters, e-skateboards, an e-bike and other fun devices. With technical innovation and driving pleasure, SoFlow creates pioneering solutions for the “last mile of transportation”.
You can buy numerous good e-scooters because the market offers a wide range of options when buying e-scooters. We recommend the following selection of vehicles, it is our top five for the summer:
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