Electric Scooter vs Electric Bike: Best Ride Yet?


Updated on January 19, 2021
ebike or escooter

Commuting is no fun. Cars are expensive, and driving can leave you stuck in terrible traffic jams even if you only have to travel a short distance. Maybe you’ve considered walking or riding a traditional bike to work, but that can be grueling. Plus no one wants to walk into work in the morning all drenched in sweat.

Thankfully, there’s a middle ground. An e-bike or e-scooter can help you dodge traffic and get to work feeling refreshed ­­ all without breaking the bank.

But which one is better? If you’re considering an e-bike or electric scooter, there are several important things for you to consider.

In this article, we will be going through the critical categories that are part of the evaluation for a personal Electric Scooter versus Electric Bikes.

This is a growing article that grows as the market demands shift and new products change the landscape of the e­rideables market.

We will be going over 6 different categories in the evaluation on which e­rideable is better:

  1. Range/Riding Distance
  2. Speed
  3. Ride Quality & Comfort
  4. Tire Size
  5. Battery Strength
  6. Portability

Let’s break them down one by one!

Range/Riding Distance

There is a wide variety of factors to consider when purchasing an electric bicycle or scooter. Yet, nothing else matters if you can’t get to where you need to go.

Odds are if you’re going to be using one of these devices as your primary means of transportation, your commute isn’t terribly far. Either of these vehicles will give you the value you are looking for.

But there are still some significant differences, especially if you’ll use it to travel longer distances.

Even though some high­end e-scooters can travel up to 80 miles at a time, but average models in the market go about 12 to 20 miles per charge. That means if your commute is fewer than 10 miles each way, an electric scooter should be able to get you to work and back on a single charge.

Electric bicycles can typically go a bit further, with an average of 20 to 30 miles per charge. As an added bonus, electric bikes can toggle back and forth between the electric motor and traditional manual peddling.

That gives you the chance to save power in the middle of your commute if you’re on some easy terrain. And it also means you’ll never be stranded if you run out of juice.

Although both of these rideables are great when it comes to the range and riding distance…

We definitely believe the Winner of Range and Riding Distance by a fairly nice lead is Electric Bicycles!

Electric Bikes ­ 1
Electric Scooters ­ 0
Q: Are electric scooters more dangerous than bikes?

A: Both the electric bike and electric scooter are not toys and are best to be ridden with safety precautions in mind. If you use it to get around, focus on riding in the bike lane, and wearing helmets.

escooter speed

Speed

Once you’re certain your vehicle has enough range to cover your needs, the next feature to consider is speed. No one likes getting up extra early in the morning because you have a long commute in front of you. The faster your electric vehicle travels, the more you’ll get to sleep in each day.

Both e-bikes and e-scooters will have a top speed that can vary based on the power of the batteries you choose. But on average, e-scooters will drive from around 6 mph to a top speed of 15­20 mph. That is a perfect range to travel in the bike lanes in most US cities.

If you want to splurge, higher end models can reach up to 30 mph, but those models can provide a great amount of luxury, utility, and style.

E-bikes can have an even wider range of top speeds. Some models will top out under 20 mph, while others can get up to 40 mph without any pedaling.

The range is dependent on both the type of battery you use and the model of bike you purchase. And as always, if you’re in a rush you can boost the speed by pedaling yourself. Electric scooters are controlled only by the throttle, which regulates speed.

In the case of how fast you can go, the Winner of the Speed section is Electric Bicycles.

Electric Bicycle ­ 2
Electric Scooter ­ 0

Ride Quality and Comfort

If you’re going to be spending your full commute on a personal electric vehicle each day, it’s important to make sure it’s a comfortable ride. This is ultimately a matter of preference, but there are some very significant differences to consider.

Electric scooters can feel awkward at first, particularly at high speeds. They can definitely take some getting used to, and we recommend taking a few practice runs up and down the street before using one on a full commute. But once you get the hang of it, they’re actually quite intuitive and easy to use.

As to comfort, that depends entirely on the preferences of the user. Some may prefer standing up for the duration of their commute, especially if they have an office job where they’re seated all day.

Plus, riding an e-scooter regularly can help boost your core strength, as you have to maintain balance while standing. But if you’re on your feet for work all day and leave your job with tired legs, the idea of continuing to stand for your commute home may be very unappealing.

The comfort of e-bikes can vary dramatically as well. You get to sit down, but sometimes sitting in the same position on a narrow bike seat for an extended period of time can be quite uncomfortable. And may even cause your legs to fall asleep!

Fortunately, some e-bikes have interchangeable seats, so if you don’t like the one it comes with you can simply purchase one that you find more comfortable.

Still even without having a seat, we want to award the Winner of Ride Quality and Comfort category to Electric Scooters!

Electric Bicycles ­ 2
Electric Scooters ­ 1
Q: Are electric scooters faster than bikes?

A: There are different brands of scooters that are faster than e-bikes, but most often e-bikes are faster than electric scooters. Especially if the electric bike is a pedal-assist.

Tire Size

One of the biggest differences between electric bicycles and scooters that many people don’t consider is tire size. Some electric scooters will have thicker treads designed to boost shock absorption, but overall they typically have small tires around 8 inches in diameter, give or take a few.

E-bikes on the other hand will typically have tires around 20 inches in diameter, and some models may even come with mountain bike tires so you can take them off-road in your spare time.

If you’re going to be using your electric vehicle predominantly on smooth city streets, this may not factor into your decision at all. But if your commute includes bumpier terrain, like gravel roads or uneven sidewalks ­­you might get a smoother ride out of larger bicycle tires.

Every brand of e-bike or scooter has their own special kinds of tire that could be more fit for off-roading or city ride. People like to have the option of changing their tires as well, which is much easier to do on the electric scooter.

Coming out of left field, the Winner of Tire Size goes to Electric scooters.

Electric Bikes ­ 2
Electric Scooters ­ 2

Battery Strength

E-scooters and e-bikes are both typically powered by lithium­ion batteries. This is the same type of battery that charges smartphones, and they are lighter and much longer-lasting than traditional lead­acid batteries.

Most e-bikes will have large 36 Volt lithium­ion batteries. They usually last about 500 to 1000 charge cycles and take two to six hours to charge.

Electric scooter batteries, on the other hand, are typically made up of a pack of small, individual 18650 battery cells. Each cell isn’t particularly powerful on its own, but average personal electric scooter battery packs will have about 30 18650 cells ­­ and take about five hours to charge.

The great thing about both an e-bike and electric scooter is that both have replaceable battery packs so the use of them get better with time if you decide to carry your own personal packs.

The winner of the Battery Strength category must go to the E-bikes! They’ve definitely figured the entire battery process and getting it to be as efficient as possible from day one.

Electric Bikes ­ 3
Electric Scooters ­ 2
ebike range

Portability

When the thought of portability comes into play with these two modes of transportation, it can oftentimes be a secondary thought. The fact of the matter is that when you use your electric rideable to take to places, you want an easy and stress-free way to store it without needing to put it into a vault only to access it later in the day.

The easier is it is to store your electric rideable, the more places you can take it like, trains, cars, schools, and your offiee building.

Often times, it’s significantly easier to store your electric scooter under your desk or somewhere in the side where there wouldn’t be much getting in the way and easy to store in your apartment, if you don’t have much space!

E-bikes definitely have the same needs that a regular bicycle does and would have to get a similar situation with storing them potentially outside in the elements if there isn’t any room in your office building or school.

This can show it self to be very much of a challenge and lowers the portability of the E-bikes significantly.

However, if you decide to find a foldable e-bike then you’re dealing with the best of having a pedal-assist bicycle and personal portable bicycle. These types of bikes electric are not the easiest ones to find and can be more expensive.

By a landslide, we are giving the Winner of the Portability category to Electric Scooters!

Electric Bikes 3
Electric Scooters ­ 3
Q: Is electric scooter better than bike?

A: Electric scooter serves a much different purpose than an electric bike. Dependent on your riding style or your transportation commuting distance, you may want to choose an electric bicycle as opposed to an electric scooter.

e-Bike or e-Scooter: The Final Verdict

Overall, with a very close fight throughout the stretch of this article, we’ve come up with a draw! Both of these vehicles have the great qualities of what people come to expect out of an e­rideable.

There are tons of options there in the marketplace right now. But, electric bikes and e-scooters have been around long enough to give the consumer what they want.

It’s all depedant on what situation is going be the best for you and gives you the most enjoyment.

Electric rideables are going to be in our lives for several years and this is going to be a great time to experience the enjoyment you can have out of ownership of your own.