The 6 Best Cheap Electric Scooters (We Tested Them All)

We spent more than 168 hours and rode 356 miles testing 16 of the best cheap electric scooters, selected from a field of over 231 models. After 48 brake tests, 48 hill climbs, 48 acceleration tests and 16 long walks home from the range-test loop, we’ve found the 6 scooters under $500 which deliver ultimate value.

ScooterSuperpowerPriceRangeWarranty
Gotrax GXL V2
Cheapest that’s
not a toy
$29910.1 mi3 months
Hiboy S2
Performance bargain
on flat-proof tires
$38912.7 mi1 year
Gotrax XR Elite
Unbeatable range
per dollar
$49916.6 mi3 months
TurboAnt X7 Pro
Swappable battery$54915.3 mi6 months
Gotrax G4
Fastest and most
feature packed
$59914.6 mi3 months
Xiaomi Mi M365
Lightest and most
well rounded
$59928 mi1 year

Best Cheap Scooter Under $300

GOTRAX GXL Commuter v2

Man accelerating on a Gotrax electric scooter
Gotrax GXL Commuter V2 | Credit: ESG

Gotrax GXL V2 Commuter: Cheapest Scooter That’s Not a Kid’s Toy

Other than walking, this is the least expensive, most reliable way to get there.

The GXL V2 delivers outstanding braking and ride quality for its price, with regen braking up front, a disc out back, and grippy pneumatic tires at both ends. It even has cruise control, though we kind of wish it didn’t, since there is no audio, or visual indicator to let the user know when cruise control is engaged, and it can’t be disabled. With a rear reflector rather than a tail light, it’s pushing the boundaries of basic transportation. But, in terms of raw transportation per dollar it can’t be beat. 

The GOTRAX brand is known for big value and short warranties (90 days). We recommend buying this brand through retailers like Amazon, who are there to help ensure customer satisfaction, if worse comes to worst.

Price$299
Range*10.1 mi
Warranty90 days
Top speed*13.5 mph
Weight*27.4 lbs
Max rider weight220 lb
Motor power250 w
Battery187 wh
IP ratingIP54
* Based on our performance tests which may differ from the manufacturer’s claims.

Best Cheap Scooters Under $400

Hiboy S2

Hiboy S2 | Credit: Richard S. / ESG

Hiboy S2: Performance Bargain on Flat-Proof Tires

Even if you spend $100 more, you won’t find a scooter that can beat the S2 for top speed, acceleration or braking.

It’s a scooter we didn’t initially want to like. It’s jingly rear fender (that’s easy to fix) and semi-solid tires were off putting, as well as it’s frankly, goofy brand name.  But the more we rode it, tested it, analyzed it and considered how little it costs, the more it pushed its way to the top for value.

The S2’s rear suspension helps it deliver surprisingly not-terrible ride quality in spite of its maintenance-free honeycomb tires.  

It also comes with an exceptional app which lets the rider adjust the intensity of acceleration and regen braking, in addition to selecting sport mode. So you can fine tune the sporty feel of your ride.

Price$389
Range*12.7 mi
Warranty1 year
Top speed*19.0 mph
Weight*31.9 lbs
Max rider weight270 lb
Motor power350 w
Battery270 wh
IP ratingIP54
* Based on our performance tests which may differ from the manufacturer’s claims.

GOTRAX Xr Elite

Man crouched next to the Xr Elite electric scooter
Gotrax XR Elite | Credit: Ramier J. / ESG

Gotrax XR Elite: Unbeatable Range Per Dollar

When you’re using a scooter for transportation, range is king, and that’s where the XR Elite shines.

The Elite delivers 64% more ESG certified range than it’s little brother, (the GXL) while gaining only 4 lb. It’s also got an exceptionally large deck to let you switch stance, and keep comfortable while you pile on the miles.

With pneumatic tires and the second best braking distance on this list, the XR Elite is in a value sweet-spot. You’d literally need to spend twice as much to find a scooter which can beat this one on real-world range without sacrificing ride quality. 

Price$499
Range*16.6 mi
Warranty90 days
Top speed*14.5 mph
Weight*31.8 lbs
Max rider weight220 lb
Motor power300 w
Battery281 wh
IP ratingIP54
* Based on our performance tests which may differ from the manufacturer’s claims.

Best Cheap Scooters Under $500

Turboant X7 Pro

TurboAnt X7 Pro Electric Scooter -full scooter, marina background
TurboAnt X7 Pro | Credit: Richard S. / ESG

TurboAnt X7 Pro: Unstoppable, Battery Swappable

Nothing erases range anxiety better than having a spare battery in your backpack.

The TurboAnt X7 Pro’s range doubles to 31 mi with a quick battery swap. At 6 lb, spare batteries are easy to carry and can be charged separately from the scooter. So you can charge your battery at your desk or in your apartment, even if your scooter is locked up somewhere else. 

Like a real ant, it can carry big payloads, with the highest rider weight limit on this list at 280 lb. Ride quality is extra smooth, due to big 10.0 in pneumatic tires with an unusually low specified tire pressure of 35 psi.

However, having the battery in the stem makes the steering slightly less stable than other scooters in its class, and also makes the scooter prone to tipping forward when walking alongside it.

Overall build quality is very good, but ours did develop a creaky stem after a couple weeks. It’s easy to fix; just follow the instructions in this video.

Price$549
Range*15.3 mi
Warranty6 months
Top speed*15.8 mph
Weight*31.9 lbs
Max rider weight280 lb
Motor power350 w
Battery360 wh
IP ratingIPX4
* Based on our performance tests which may differ from the manufacturer’s claims.

GOTRAX G4

Gotrax G4 electric scooter
Gotrax G4 | Credit: Richard S. / ESG

Gotrax G4: Fastest and Most Feature Packed

If you’re looking for high speed on a small budget, the GOTRAX G4 delivers, with its ESG certified top speed of 20.0 mph.

The G4 is solidly built and surprisingly feature-packed, with an integrated cable lock, immobilizer alarm, super bright display, walking mode and great handling from 10.0 in pneumatic pre-slimed tires, which help prevent flats.

It’s exceptional build quality is easy to see and feel, with almost no exposed cabling, rubber covered buttons located right under your thumb, a stout frame, and quick/effective folding mechanism. 

It’s not particularly light. The G4’s solid build, plus large battery may defy its price class, but not gravity, tipping our scales at 37.4 lbs, a solid 10 lb more than the M365. When you’re riding it, you won’t mind the weight at all. 

The G4 feels fast, full-featured and fun. 

Price$599
Range*14.6 mi
Warranty90 days
Top speed*20.0 mph
Weight*37.4 lbs
Max rider weight220 lb
Motor power350 w
Battery374 wh
IP ratingIP54
* Based on our performance tests which may differ from the manufacturer’s claims.

Xiaomi Mi M365

Xiaomi Mi M365 electric scooter on dock of lake
Xiaomi Mi M365 | Credit: Chuck T. / ESG

Xiaomi Mi M365: Lightest and Most Well-Rounded

More than four years after its release, the original king of electric scooters is still the epitome of well-rounded performance in a lightweight scooter.

It’s no wonder the M365 is the most imitated scooter on the planet. Like a Honda Civic, it pulls off one of the most difficult tricks for any vehicle: being solidly above average in every single category; performing especially well on range, braking, safety and portability. 

Its popularity means it’s easy to find spare parts and upgrades, as well as advice and support from thousands of other enthusiastic riders. 

Options for modifications are seemingly endless, but we’d recommend keeping M365’s original, other than flashing firmware to known-good versions. 

However, being very good at everything without actually being the best at anything makes it a less than exciting scooter to ride. 

But it’s still the king.

Price$599
Range*14.6 mi
Warranty1 year
Top speed*16.7 mph
Weight*26.0 lbs
Max rider weight220 lb
Motor power250 w
Battery280 wh
IP ratingIP54
* Based on our performance tests which may differ from the manufacturer’s claims.

Summary

Whether you’re searching for basic transportation, bargain-performance, max range, comfort, speed or straight-up utility, these six scooters deliver proven value. 

  • The Gotrax GXL V2 is the scooter to buy for those who want the cheapest legitimate form of transportation that isn’t total garbage or a kid’s toy.
  • The Hiboy S2 is the go-to for those who want the fastest for the cheapest. It’s also the best option if you don’t want air-filled tires that can go flat.
  • The Gotrax XR Elite is the cheapest option for those who want the most range. You’d need to spend a lot more to pick up even a little more range. 
  • The TurboAnt X7 Pro is the best option if you want a scooter with a battery that can be removed for convenient charging or swapped out to extend range.
  • The Gotrax G4 is the top choice for top speed, top features and quality. You can feel the build quality at every touch point.
  • The Xiaomi Mi M365 is the most well-rounded, time-tested design on the list and is the go-to for those who want a lightweight, no-frills scooter which is pretty darn good at everything.

If you’re still not sure what type of scooter is right for you, learn more about picking the perfect scooter in our beginner electric scooter buying guide or dig deeper into the data behind Cheap Scooters below!

All of our reviews and articles are backed by exhaustive hands-on testing and data.

Methodology

We tested the top 16 scooters under $500, and filtered the data to find cheap electric scooters with standout performance or better yet, significantly above-average performance across many categories. 

Our favorite method to identify standout performance is to plot performance versus another variable such as price, calculate the trend line for the group, and then look for outliers, or scooters that are furthest from the trendline in the intended direction.

Usually higher is better, but for braking and acceleration times, a lower position on the plot demonstrates better performance. The actual data we used to select the top six is plotted below.

We scored the scooters overall by ranking them by their average deviation from trend across all categories:

Quality Control

We subjected the entire field to a pass/fail test for quality and repairability. After all, it doesn’t matter how well a scooter performs if you can’t rely on it or repair it.

There was one scooter, for example, which scored well in some of our tests but we found we just couldn’t recommend: the Macwheel MX Pro.

It had amazing performance scores for range per dollar and range per pound, but the ride quality and build quality were just not up to the same level as the other scooters. We covered this topic in detail in Liveshow #88.

ESG’s scooter reviews and articles are always based on actual performance testing and real data.

How can we prove that? We always show you the data. 

Range vs. Price

Cheap Scooters - Range versus Price graph

Range vs. Weight

Cheap Scooters - Range versus Weight graph

Acceleration Time vs. Price

Cheap Scooters - Acceleration Time versus Price graph

Top Speed vs. Price

Cheap Scooters - Top Speed vs. Price graph

Hill Climb Speed vs. Price

Cheap Scooters - Hillclimb Speed versus Price graph

Braking Distance vs. Price

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About the Author

Paul

With a background in applied physics, Paul is ESG’s Hardware Program Manager and a former motorcycle roadracing champion and manager of scooter repair workhouses for Lime and Skip; Paul has spent more of his life riding (and working) on two wheels than four.

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