Riding scooters isn’t only for leisure anymore. Adrenaline and speed junkies alike are now using this transportation method for racing. Yet, what surprises most people is just how fast these electric scooters can actually go. Furthermore, each scooter company is now pushing the limits on what their particular device can do.
When some people think of scooters, they envision a fun ride for their children. The top speed on these scooters rarely exceeds 20 km. Even on an adult scooter, maximum speeds tend to hover at 40 km.
What may shock some is that racing scooters can exceed 100 km/hr and yet still look like an overgrown child’s toy. However, they are the furthest thing from it. At 35 kg or 77 lbs, a custom-built YCOM-S1-X electric scooter was designed for the eSkootr Championship (eSC).
Yes, they are that fast and that well-built.
The eSC is the world’s first and only high-speed electric scooter racing league. Its existence was made prominent several years ago when its intentions were announced, and it began searching for teams. It quickly became popular for those interested in watching people on small wheels take turns at high speeds.
Fortunately, enough teams quickly registered, and thus the eSC began.
On the spectator side, people were fascinated at watching others ride on powerful, fast, and crazy-looking e-scooters. The eSC allowed people to watch the events, which were supervised and regulated with paramedics nearby.
While the idea can be considered extreme since the e-scooters are so open, they are no different from motorbike racing. Riders are outfitted in complete motorcycle racing suits with helmets, which demonstrates how serious they are about overall safety. Customized race tracks also make riding safe, as there have been many racing accidents on tracks with improper design.
The eSC began in 2022, using specially-designed circuits. The length of the racing tracks varied between 400-800 meters (1,300-2,600 feet). To decrease racing team costs and lower entry barriers, it was decided to standardize the single-scooter design. Thus, YCOM, a motorsport engineering company, was selected as the designer.
YCOM produced a high-power S1-X for the eSC league. At 12 kW (16 hp), this electric scooter splits its power between two in-wheel hub motors. Special boost buttons enabled the device to increase its power by 20% on a straightaway track. There was stored energy from a 1.5 kW battery under the scooter’s deck.
The scooter contained a carbon fibre chassis, which was environmentally friendly and aerodynamic. Since its components were machine aluminum and combined with a carbon fibre chassis, the scooter was incredibly lightweight for something so high-powered.
Before racing began, YCOM had ten electric scooters (with 20 more being worked on) before the start of racing. The first units trained with 16 riders, with power limited to 40%. As testing went on, power increased to 70%. However, riders stated they experienced fatigue due to the physical demands of going at 55° lean angles and high speeds.
With improvements in physical conditioning and practice, YCOM hoped that riders could race at full power along with the boost function by the first race.
The focus, going forward, is to prevent injuries. The first season of the eSC taught individuals that it is easy to lose control of an e-scooter. A loss of control comes with little warning, and it is challenging for the scooter to quickly recover. Thus, potential injuries surrounding the neck, head, and upper/lower limb joints can occur.
Therefore, the greatest challenge that manufacturers are facing today is how to increase stability. A 12-month research program is being implemented to examine control characteristics, structural stiffness, wheel gyroscopics, and steering geometry.
Their research isn’t stopping at the racing e-scooters, though. They are also examining commercial e-scooters to validate the results.
While many racing e-scooters are custom-built, this evolution in what the product could do prompted manufacturers to push their limits as well.
In 2022, Segway launched its GT series of electric scooters. They were marketed as hyper-scooters. Segway created an e-scooter that catered to individuals who wanted more power, gadgets, safety, and fun. They launched a durable scooter to satisfy their customers’ needs.
The GT2 contains a maximum speed of over 70 km/h (43 miles per hour) and has two 1500 W motors. Its acceleration speed is 3.9 seconds with a 90 km maximum range.
Blutron created the S65 with a longer range (64 km/40 miles) than the Blutron One. It has an 800 W peak power motor with a powerful throttle. This e-scooter provides a wide-foot deck without sacrificing balance. It has a maximum speed of 32 km/hr (20 miles) and a range of 64 km.
The average electric scooter runs at 64 km/hr (40 miles per hour), with the highest at 100 km/hr (62 miles per hour). The top three electric scooters in terms of speed are:
However, electric scooters that can travel at high velocities are reserved for advanced riders. Furthermore, before considering making a purchase, there are a few things you need to know.
When travelling at high speeds, you will need a stiffer suspension. Select a scooter that is closer to ground level to provide better stability and brakes and stronger tires.
When riding the scooter, tiny steering movements generate a larger impact. You will need to be aware of how to brake by using your knees and body and positioning them effectively. Riders will need to lean slightly backward like they are sitting down with their knees bent.
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