Should you buy an electric scooter?

When to buy an electric scooter and when not to?

You may have read everywhere that “why” one should buy an electric scooter over petrol scooter, mainly citing environmental and economic reasons. This quick article honestly describes “when” one should consider buying electric scooter. To decide that, you must be aware of all the demerits so that you know when not to buy an electric scooter.
Merits and Demerits of EVs
Most people are aware of merits like economy and environment benefits. Furthermore EVs have superior initial torque. Unlike conventional vehicles with combustion engines, EVs provide better initial torque from zero RPM which is useful in accelerating after signals and speed breakers.
But this comes with some limitations like maximum range per charge, range anxiety, maximum speed, poor resale value due to fiber parts.
When not to buy an electric scooter?
1. You drive more than maximum range of your EV in a single day without halts.
  • If fast charging is not available, EVs generally require 3-4 hours for charging. If you can charge 1-2 hours in lunch break, then 1.5x commute can be done in a single day.
2. You mostly cover intercity travel on a scooter.
  • If the round-way distance is almost equal to available range of vehicle, and you don’t charge at intermediate point, “range anxiety” can occur.
3. You are habituated of driving above 50 km/h speed and frequent accelerations most of the time.
  • 90% of electric scooters sold in India are low speed scooters, that means they don’t go beyond 25 km/h speed (no wonder why “speed” is missing in specification section of most of EV brochures and websites!!). High speed electric scooters are available, expensive yet they come with condition that range will be reduced at high speeds.
4. You drive only 2-3 km everyday.
  • If environment is the concern, then this might not be the point. But if economy is the concern, electric scooter may or may not offer you economic advantage as compared to petrol scooter for such a minuscule usage pattern. Check out our EV economy calculator for more details.
When should you consider buying an electric scooter?
1. You are aware, educated and concerned for environment.
  • “EVs are not zero pollution vehicles, they just shift emissions outside the city, at coal power plants!” – But “Something is better than nothing” – its important to start from somewhere! Gradually whole world will produce electricity in cleaner way.
2. You drive 15 km or more everyday in the city.
  • If daily commute falls in this range, buying an electric scooter would be an intelligent choice, not only it will save environment, but also save good amount of money which would have rather burnt in petrol. Resale value of EV is poor but if you calculate thoughtfully, it is still economical than petrol scooter.
3. You are fleet owner and want to save cost.
  • EVs can save around 30%-40% of operational costs if handled properly. Many electric scooters come with anti-theft system pre-installed.
4. You want your kids to drive a safe vehicle, hassle-free.
  • Almost 90% of electric scooters available in India are low speed scooters. That means a kid (above 15 years of age) can ride it without license.