The electric scooter that folds is not a new concept. As congestion in and around major cities in the US continues to rise, it is pushing commuters to either fork over expensive rentals or buy equally expensive homes near work. Those who cannot afford to live near their work place are forced to commute longer hours. This has resulted in an ever-increasing transportation nightmare, which has sent many in search for clean and efficient transport alternatives and last mile solutions.
With old SLA batteries the electric scooters were still just too cumbersome to take with you on the public transport, even when they fold. However with new battery technology, the scooters are getting lighter and the companies and startups are battling for their share of the market by coming up with all kinds of solutions for packing a decent size adult scooter into a backpack. So there is really an increasing number of options for anyone looking for portable transport solution, it just comes to what will fit your needs best.
Best Electric Folding Scooters for Portability
What do you need to look for in a folding electric scooter? To be 100% usable, an electric scooter has to be portable. It needs to fit in the trunk of your car and must be lightweight enough to carry it with you wherever you go – a bus, a train or take it into your office. The purpose of a foldable electric scooter is to make your everyday life easier, not being a hassle. It needs to be something you can always keep with you, unfold it easily and use whenever you need to. However, besides being portable and foldable, it actually needs to be powerful and sturdy enough to take your adult size self where you need to go. That means that you need to look for a quality product and not a kids’ toy.
We have made a list of electric scooters that, in our opinion, tick all the boxes.
1. Glion Dolly Portable Electric Scooter
Glion Dolly is a fun-to-ride, easy-to-use last mile transport for urban commuters. With its minimalist design and simple but useful features it is built to take you from A to B faster than walking. Folding and unfolding is super easy and you will be ready to go in no time. Innovative dolly function allows you to wheel it like a rolling suitcase, and it also has the ability to stand up vertically all by itself.
The top speed is up to 15 mph, which is not fast, but still faster than walking. The advertised range is 15 miles, but realistically you can expect to get 7-8 good miles out of it and a couple more with a struggle. Glion Dolly is one of the most affordable electric scooters on our list, but that also means that you will have to accept some shortcomings. First, there are handlebar control that feel very plastic and cheap. Second, there is no suspension, and “military-style honeycomb tires” are just not enough to make the ride smooth over bumps. On the high note, those tires grip the road well, even when it’s a bit wet. The only break is a rear one, which means you have to ride carefully, because there is no stopping on a dime.
To sum things up, Glion Dolly is not perfect, but it gets the job done if all you need is to turn that 40-minute walk to the train station into a fun ride.
- Folding is quick and easy.
- It’s got pull-out trolley handle and luggage wheels so you can drag it along just like a suitcase.
- Stands vertically by itself.
- Bright headlight and built-in tail reflector.
- No suspension.
- Only a rear brake.
- Can’t climb hills.
- It tends to get wobbly if the road is not super smooth.
2. Xiaomi M365 Mi
This electric scooter by one of the most renowned Chinese manufacturers of anything electric, Xiaomi, has already won over hearts of many commuters thanks to its simple design, light weight and a reliable performance. Xiaomi M365 is powered by 250W (500W peak) front hub motor, and it offers high travel speed and the ultra-long cruise distance. It’s a convenient and reliable way to get around.
The build quality is surprisingly good, the materials, the finish, paint job, the welds, it all looks pretty well including the details like nice rubber handles. It is loaded with full safety particularly in the braking system. It comes with E-ABS on the front and a mechanical disk brake on the rear.
It takes about 5.5 hours to charge from 0 to 100%, which may seem long, but the range on a full charge is 18 miles, which means it doesn’t need a full recharge after every single ride. The Xiaomi electric scooter is equipped with a kinetic energy recovery system: it will convert kinetic energy to electric energy for storage and reuse, prolonging the scooter’s battery life. To activate energy recovery, press the brake or release the throttle. Also, there is a cruise control on Mi Home app, which allows the scooter to go into an intelligent riding mode.
All in all, the Xiaomi M365 folding electric scooter is a safe, convenient and environmentally-friendly option for short distance travel or daily commute. And with such an affordable price, we were honestly impressed.
- Amazing safety features like lights and braking system.
- Good battery capacity and notable range.
- The inflatable tire with skid resistant and shock resistant property.
- Weighing 27 pounds, it is not too heavy.
- Extremely low ground clearance, so be careful over bumps.
- Maximum load is 220 pounds.
3. E-Twow GT 2020 – Fastest Foldable Scooter
The all new E-Twow GT is foldable, lightweight and a serious contender for the best commuting scooter at the moment. Powered by a 700W brushless motor, and it reach the top speed of 25 mph and provides enough torque to propel you to 15 mph in 5 seconds. The battery is also a strong feature of this scooter, 48V, 10.5 Ah with Samsung cells, delivering maximum range of 30 miles ideally. The wheels are airless 8″, pretty much a standard in lightweight urban scooters. Front spring suspension hidden behind a stylish ribbed rubber, and a rear one hidden in the frame do a great job in cushioning the ride.
The 2020 GT is one of the most compact out there, thanks to the unique 3-point folding mechanism combined with collapsible handlebars. It might come as a surprise that this scooter does not have a disc brake, but the quality of its e-braking system makes up for it. To be honest it is better to have a really good electronic brake than a dodgy disc brake. Besides, there is a rear friction brake, just in case. ETwow GT is made for the urban commuter, designed to travel quickly, be folded quickly and be easily carried and stored anywhere you want, under an office desk or in the trunk of a car.
- Very powerful motor.
- Can climb up to 25 degree incline.
- Front and Rear Shock Absorbers
- No kickstand
- Only has the electronic brake.
4. Gotrax GXL Lightweight eScooter
The latest of the Denver based company Gotrax line of electric scooters has just hit the market and it became an instant hit. And it’s for a good reason. Actually it is for several good reasons!
First, this scooter is designed beautifully. Sleek and seamless, without wires coming out of everywhere it looks like a high end product, and not like a toy or a DIY project assembled in someone’s basement.
Second, this scooter has a dual braking system, which is very rare for electric scooter at this price point. Gotrax GXL features a rear disc brakes conveniently controlled by foot pedal and an electric regenerative anti-lock brake system for efficient and responsive braking.
Third, the 8.5” air filled tires easily ride over bumps and cracks in your city streets and sidewalks. Pneumatic tires have their own shortcomings, you have to check the pressure, they can deflate, get punctured, but from our experience they are still superior compared to those little hard airless tires.
Fourth reason are all those extra features, such as built-in dynamic handlebar display so you can keep track of the battery life, headlights, and speed, or a bright LED headlight so you can enjoy your ride even at night.
Fifth, this scooter is IP54 water resistant, and the battery is UL2271 certified. So, this scooter is not only designed to look good and ride well, but to be durable as well.
Last, but certainly not the least important – this scooter is currently one of the most affordable electric scooters and it is definitely the most affordable from those with similar design and similar feature set (Xiaomi M365, Swagger 5, Ninebot ES2)
- Bright LED headlight and tail light, really useful for a night ride.
- 8.5 inch air-filled rubber tires.
- Very convenient dual braking system
- Some buyers have complained of a poor customer support.
5. Swagtron Swagger 5
Swagtron, maker of some of the most popular hoverboards and a couple models of pretty decent and cheap electric skateboards, also has started making electric scooters. The original Swagger electric scooter used to be the world’s lightest carbon fiber powered electric scooter by Swagtron. The latest Swagtron scooter, dubbed Swagger 5, has very little in common with its predecessor.
In fact, it looks more like a Xiaomi M365 than the new version of a Swagger scooter. It is a step up from those dingy carbon fiber electric scooters, but not very original. The aluminum frame folds for easy storage or carrying, although it is not very lightweight weighing about 27 lbs. An integrated bar-mounted LED display that tells you your current speed, battery level, and headlight and Bluetooth status, which is a useful upgrade compared to Xiaomi. The 250W motor allows you to travel up to 18 mph, for up to 11 miles.
Swagtron has also released an iOS and Android app that pairs with the Swagger 5 to give you even more control. Pair your smartphone with the Swagger 5 via Bluetooth and you can use the app to activate cruise control, select your speed, plan your route with GPS, control the headlight, and more. The app also adds a theft-deterrent lock and alarm mode. The scooter also comes with the phone mount included.
Although the Swagtron Swagger 5 has no groundbreaking features or state of the art technology, but it is a very good scooter overall. It’s easy maneuvering, fast braking, and great balance, and offers anyone an enhanced urban transportation experience. So whether you are an e-scoot grommet or just looking for a fun way to ride around town, this scooter is a decent affordable choice. If you want to know more, read our full review here.
6. Mercane Widewheel – Unique Folding Design
Widewheel is created by Mercane, a Korean manufacturer of personal mobility vehicles, in an attempt to come up with the electric kickscooter that provides greater driving comfort, and smoother ride. 500W BLDC Hub motor offers enough power and hill climbing torque and a solid performance even in more demanding driving conditions. Widewheel scooter comes in two versions – one with 422Wh battery pack, which gives you the range of 20 miles and top speed of about 15mph, and a more powerful model with a 634Wh battery pack and a driving range of over 30 miles.
Wheels are what sets this scooter apart from others. They are 3.9 inches wide (hence the name Widewheel), which gives the scooter amazing stability, not only while riding, but it doesn’t even need a kickstand to stand upright by itself (though it does have one). The tires are solid, covered in rubber and filled with soft polyurethane foam, which is supposed to absorb the bumps on the road. It is also equipped with dual suspension, so it is not only easy to ride, but surprisingly comfortable as well. Wheels are on the smaller side, they are about 8 inches, so you can tell that Widewheel is not meant for riding over potholes.
The one thing we really didn’t like is the very weird folding mechanism. To fold or unfold the handlebar you need to turn a dial located on the side to unscrew and loosen the lock, and then turn again to tighten it back, when you put the handlebar into the position you want. The supposed advantage of this solution is that it fits nice and tight without shaking rattling while driving, but with so many elegant and simple solutions, we just couldn’t give it a go-by. But, it is really just the matter of personal preference.
List of Widewheel features includes LED display that indicates battery life. There is no display that would show you details like speed, distance or speed mode. High luminance LED headlight and brake light allows you to ride safely at night.
Overall, Widewheel is a robust, easy to ride, nicely designed electric scooter. Its unique design makes it worth checking out, especially if you look for more stability in your commuting scooter.
- Ultra wide wheels and improved stability
- Dual suspension system
- The model with the stronger battery has range of 30 miles, which is the longest range of all the scooters on this list.
- Folding mechanism.
- Weighing 38 lbs (45lbs for stronger version), it is heavy.
- While it might not bother some, we are not crazy about the solid wheels.
7. Segway Ninebot MAX – Foldable Commuter
Ninebot MAX is a flagship scooter of the manufacturer of very popular Ninebot ES2 and ES4. Segway is the company that stands behind Ninebot line of scooters, which is a guarantee that they are made of quality parts. It seems like Ninebot MAX lives up to this reputation.
This scooter features a 350W hub motor with a peak power of 800W. This is enough for the top speed of 15.5 mph in most cases, while the advertised 18 mph is only really achievable if you’re a fairly lightweight rider. The maximum range is 40 miles can only thanks to the heavy-duty 551Wh Lithium battery, and you can expect to realistically get at least 33 – 35 miles on a single charge.
Ninebot MAX is not exactly lightweight, weighing 42 lbs, but it’s not a toy either. This little scooter is very sturdy and can take on a rough ride. With a wide foot deck, and additional accessories, like the 2.5W LED front headlight and the Segway-Ninebot app, make the ride a real pleasure.
If you need a ride capable of going more that few miles on a single charge, and that is fast enough to keep up with traffic, Ninebot MAX is made for you
- The range of over 30 miles.
- Strong and sturdy design
- Very bright integrated LED headlight
- It is a bit too heavy to be carried around.
Also the best-selling Ninebot ES4
Top Scooters Compared
||Xiaomi M365 Mi||E-Twow GT 2020||Swagtron Swagger 5
||Widewheel Electric Scooter||Ninebot MAX
|Power||250 W||300 W||700 W||250 W||250W||2 x 500W||350W|
|Speed||15 mph||15.5 mph||30 mph||18 mph||15.5 mph||25 mph||15.5 mph|
|Range||10 miles||18.6 miles||25 miles||11 miles||12.5 miles||20 miles||40 miles|
|Battery||36V||36 V, 6.6Ah||48 V, 10.5 Ah||36 V, 280 Wh||24 V, 3.8 Ah||48 V||36V 551Wh|
|Weight||28 lbs||26.9 lbs||27 lbs||27.5 lbs||33 lbs||38 lbs||42.1 lbs|
|CHECK PRICE||CHECK PRICE||CHECK PRICE||CHECK PRICE||CHECK PRICE||CHECK PRICE||CHECK PRICE|
Advantages of Foldable Electric Scooters
No more trouble with parking
There is a whole class of electronic vehicles that allows you to cover short distances, maybe finish the commute or get around town without needing a car. When you can’t ride it, just fold your scooter and store it anywhere.
Lightweight and compact
Portable electric scooters are the best last mile solution, some of them offering a quite pleasant ride, and a convenience of compact design that allows you to take your ride with you to the public transport, a store or your office.
They are fun!
If you are anything like me, you used to spend a whole summer outside, doing tricks on you Razor scooter. Remember how much fun you used to have? Riding one of these electric scooters you will get the same feeling as you had riding down your block when you were a kid.