What’s the difference between an ebike and an electric scooter?
The key difference lies in the source of propulsion. Electric scooters are exclusively propelled by a throttle control and a DC motor. An electric bicycle (or ebike) is normally but not always activated by the use of the pedals to power the motor (pedal assist or pedelec) without a throttle.
Now you may be wondering, why would anyone want to pedal when you can just press a throttle? Pedal assist ebikes actually gives more distance per charge because it consumes only a fraction of the electrical power a fully automated ebike or escooter consumes.
Let’s say, it takes approx 200W of power to run at 25km/h on a straight road. On a pedal assist ebike, it will consume 100W of power from the battery pack and 100W of power from the rider. This compared to a full 200W of power that is solely powered by the battery when operating a throttle controlled escooter (or ebike). You can potentially double your range per charge on a pedelec!
However, pedal assist ebikes have been around for a while. We at sgscooters are more concerned about portable ebikes or electric scooters with seats that are foldable, lightweight and compact. That is our whole reason for our existence.
What do you call an ebike-looking vehicle that does not have pedals? It’s ambiguous, but according to the latest legal classifications, they are classified as electric scooters and hence are not allowed to be used on public roads. For our purposes, we will classify as such:
Pedalless Ebike = Electric Scooter with seat
In this blog, sgscooters will introduce the Best Pedalless Portable Ebikes in the market.
The Urb-e hails from Pasadena, California and it is probably one of the few production seated electric scooter that is able to carry the “Made in the USA” tag. Wholly designed, engineered and manufactured in the US, the Urb-e has a boxy design with round cutouts for weight savings which makes for an interesting concept. Riders can customize the look by inserting different colored sleeves into the main frame. Here’s a video of how the Urb-e is made:
Sgscooters had the privilege of trying out the Urb-e and we found that although there is a slight learning curve to mastering the steering, its easy to get a hang of it after about 5 mins of practice. The coolest part is their quick folding and that makes it truly portable and seamless for a commuter. Its literally a one-second fold by lifting up the seat saddle and pressing it down.
Specification-wise, due to legal speed restrictions, the max speed for each is 20mph or 32kmh. Every full charge gets you about 30km. However, when we tried the Urb-e, it took abit of balancing for us to get used to the ride. Maybe it was just our balancing skills or lack thereof. We would like to think that the small 8 inch tires played a part in the stability of the Urb-e. The 8 inch rear wheel drive motor packs plenty of punch for its size, but does not offer the stability or grip that we were looking for.
Prices start at USD 1499 for the basic scooter and $1699 for its more powerful, higher torque version. They have a sports version which goes for $1999 too. Considering it’s made in the US, the prices are pretty reasonable. Its available for order direct on the Urb-e website.
The Stigo was conceptualized around the same time as the Urb-e and has taken a similar rocky path to production. The Stigo is designed and engineered in Estonia (where??) and manufactured by the same Taiwanese factory that makes Decathlon bikes. After 3 years of development, it seems Stigo is turning the corner and finally launching the first production Stigo.
At first glance, the Stigo looks big. And heavy. However, when you actually do pick it up and ride it, you will feel how light it is right away. The frame is designed in such a way that the frame is wholly made from aluminum alloy hollow tubes that are welded/screwed together.
The Stigo is as comfortable as they come. Their seat design is the coolest part. As opposed to a normal bicycle saddle, the Stigo has a wider saddle (for bigger butts) and is made of a flexible but tough plastic composite. The weight is incredibly light for its size at only 14kg for the basic version (range of 20km) and 15kg for the extended battery version (max range of 35km), giving it a range similar to the Urb-e for the top end.
Sgscooters recently visited their factory and witnessed a full blown production line churning out Stigos for an official launch in October 2016! Take a look at the pics below:
There is no learning curve to ride the Stigo unlike the Urb-e. A big reason is due to the larger 12.5 inch tires of the Stigo which makes balancing easier and also going up and down kerbs a possibility! Folding the Stigo is an ease too. It takes all of 3 seconds to fold and unfold it.
Check out our very first Stigo ride…with one hand on the steering wheel and the other hand filming. That would not have been possible on an ebike/escooter with smaller tires.
Prices start at USD 1300 for the 20km version and USD 1500 for the 35km version. Pretty reasonable if you compare it to other premium electric scooters in the market. The Stigo is available for preorder at Falcon PEV.