Electric scooter rental services have seen a rise in popularity, especially in metropolitan cities where traffic jams and high public transportation fees might get in the way of your daily commute.
People love the flexibility and versatility provided by such compact vehicles. One moment you can be strolling in one street; the next, you can be on a train with your electric bike folded next to you and ready to kick back into action once you’ve reached your stop.
Part of the undeniable appeal of renting electric scooters is cutting down on your transportation budget. Nevertheless, month after month, the cost adds up quickly! In fact, it’s cheaper in the long term to own your own electric scooter, especially since the market is full of many budget options that don’t compromise in terms of performance.
Tag along as we help you make an informed purchase decision and find the best electric scooter under 500 that transforms your commuter experience. You’ll be surprised by how much performance such eco-friendly vehicles pack under their hood!
The 7 Best Electric Scooters Under 500 in 2022
Electric vehicle manufacturers seem to have cracked the formula of uncompromising electric scooters at an affordable price. So buckle up as we walk you through some of the most popular electric scooters that offer an excellent value proposition and help you cut down your transportation budget!
1. Jetson Eris – Best Overall
What better way to kick off our list than Jetson Eris’ simple electric scooter! This one is the pinnacle of convenience meeting functionality. The company also manages to pack the key features that other electric scooters offer at double or triple the price, giving you a well-rounded package that doesn’t require you to break a bank!
For instance, the Jetson Eris is made of aero-grade aluminum, delivering a premium look and feel. It’s also designed in a way that makes folding and unfolding it as seamless as possible. As a result, you won’t have to frown at the next set of steps that comes your way, as the Jetson Eris can be folded into a compact package in a matter of seconds.
In terms of convenience, the Jetson Eris packs all kinds of accessories to make your urban adventures much more fun. For example, you get a phone holder giving you hands-free access to your GPS and music playlist.
Speaking of the brakes, the Jetson Eris comes with front ABS electric brakes together with rear disc brakes. This dual braking system is built with the utmost safety in mind, giving you full control over your scooter no matter how fast you’re going.
In terms of speed, the Jetson Eris is capable of reaching a top speed of 14 mph, which leaves a lot to be desired if you’re an adrenaline junkie looking for the most thrill on the road. However, most commuters will find speed settings at display here more than reasonable for their everyday outings.
Finally, the Jetson Eris uses a set of 8.5-inch solid tires instead of the pneumatic tires seen on other scooters. Admittingly, you won’t deliver the smoothest ride once you stroll across some rough terrain.
But still, you get the benefit of having a virtually maintenance-free set of tires. Also, the front shock absorbers mitigate some of the bumps you might run across, smoothing things down a bit more.
- Offers an LED display that gives you glanceable information like speed and battery life
- Lightweight form factor
- Seamless folding mechanism
- Only offers 40 minutes of usage on a single charge
- Sluggish acceleration on rough terrain
The Jetson Eris nails all the basics that make an electric scooter an appealing means of transportation for many commuters. If you don’t mind some sluggish acceleration every now and then, you’ll be pleased by the package that the Jetson Eris offers.
2. Razor E325 – Best Safety
At a weight of 40 lbs, the Razor E325 remains sturdy on the road without getting to the point where carrying it around becomes a chore. The electric scooter is engineered to keep a balanced profile on the road and ensure your safety while navigating the city.
That’s not all; the Razor E325 implements a safe and responsive braking system that doesn’t miss a beat. The rear disc brake kicks into action the moment you twist the throttle, bringing your scooter to a smooth stop.
In terms of speed, the Razor E325 offers comparable top speed to the one we’ve seen with the Jetson Eris. The 250W powerful motor enables you to reach a speed of 15 mph while keeping the acceleration smooth all the way.
Furthermore, the Razor E325 uses a sealed lead acid battery that allows for 40 minutes of continuous usage on one charge. The battery life isn’t the scooter’s strongest trait, and Razor seems to understand such a limitation. This is why you get fast charging capabilities that make the downtime between each recharge less frustrating.
When it comes to comfort, the Razor E325 does an exceptional job of accommodating riders of different body shapes. You get a super-sized deck that never limits your mobility. Also, the weight capacity is kept at 220 lbs, which should be suitable for a wide chunk of people.
Unlike the Jetson Eris, the Razor E325 uses 9″ pneumatic tires. Though they aren’t as durable as their solid variants, they do a better job at smoothing out the bumps and nicks you might run into. You also get a retractable kickstand, cementing the Razor E325 as a viable kid-friendly option for parents looking for ways to spend more outdoor time with their children.
- Offers excellent safety features
- The powerful motor delivers smooth acceleration
- Comes with a decent weight limit of 220 lbs
- Doesn’t fair well when conquering sloping roads
If safety is the selling point you’re looking for in your electric scooter, the Razor E325 is just for you. Its frame is made of a mix of aluminum and steel, giving you a durable skeleton without sacrificing portability. Also, the Razor E325 is among the easiest e-scooters to operate, making it a great pick for your child.
3. Swagtron SG-5 – Best Value
Though the Swagtron SG-5 uses a 250W motor comparable to the one seen on the Razor E325, Swagtron’s offering seems to be more efficient. The electric scooter manages to squeeze more performance out of the electric motor, pushing the top speed to 18 mph instead of 15 mph on its Razor counterpart.
That’s not all; you also get an upgrade in terms of range and battery life. The Swagtron gives a maximum travel distance of 12 miles spanning over 50 minutes, which is a decent step up over what the Razor E325 provides.
The Swagtron SG-5 also implements a smart battery management system. This is made possible by using the built-in power button or the E-scooter’s companion app on your smartphone. You can switch between three different speed modes, each with a different strain on battery life.
For instance, the eco-mode gives you the most range while sacrificing acceleration and top speed. On the other end of the spectrum, the Swagtron SG-5 comes with a performance mode that gives you uncompromising functionality, allowing you to reach the marketed 18 mph top speed.
Furthermore, the Swagtron sits at around 27.5 lbs, making it a far more portable scooter than the Razor E325. Nevertheless, the scooter’s weight makes it less stable on the road, so unless you’re a more skilled rider, you might find some difficulty keeping a steady route with the scooter wiggling around when hitting any bumps along the way.
In everyday usage, stability isn’t as bad as it sounds, as the Swagtron SG-5 still has some tricks under its sleeve. It combines a pneumatic front wheel with a solid honeycomb-patterned back wheel. This gives you the best of both worlds in terms of smoothness on the road and low maintenance.
- Offers great value for your buck
- Features an anti-lock braking system
- A smart regenerative braking system that uses excess kinetic energy to charge your battery
- The acceleration speed leaves a lot to be desired
- A valve extender is sold secretly and required for maintenance
Swagtron sits at a unique position in the budget electric scooter market with its SG-5 and for all the good reasons. The company brings its innovative technologies to its more affordable model, giving customers the most value for their buck. For instance, the combination of mechanical and electronic brakes is a huge leap forward at this price range!
4. Hiboy S2 – Most Reliable
If you’re a power user who’s looking for an electric scooter that can take a beating, Hiboy S2 is the one for you. The scooter has one of the lowest breakdown rates, making it the obvious choice for cities with less than ideal infrastructure and no dedicated bike lanes.
Just like the Jetson Eris electric scooter, the Hiboy S2 swaps the air-filled tires with more reliable solid ones that conquer rough terrain with no issues. However, this time around, the Hiboy S2 implements a rear suspension that handles shock absorption a bit better than its Jetson Eris counterpart.
In terms of performance, the Hiboy S2 knocks it out of the park with its 350W brushless motor. It allows for smooth acceleration and a top speed of 18.6 mph.
When paired with a high capacity 270 Wh lithium-ion battery, you get a travel range of 17 miles with the power-saving mode. That’s an impressive feat that crushes the norms of what budget scooters are capable of.
It’s worth noting that the Hiboy S2 follows in the footsteps of the innovative braking systems we’ve seen on the Swagtron SG-5. The scooter uses a very responsive disc brake for its rear-wheel while implementing an electric brake system for its front wheel.
This allows for an anti-lock braking system preventing the brake lever from getting stuck and becoming unreliable.
Finally, the Hiboy S2 offers a whole slate of smart features that truly transform the user experience. For example, the companion app offers a cruise control feature, allowing you to customize the speed of your scooter. Furthermore, you can lock your electric scooter right from the app, giving you peace of mind when you leave it to grab a quick coffee on the way.
- Features a durable metal frame that can take lots of beating
- Comes with an anti-lock brake for a smooth riding experience
- Offers front, middle, and rear lights for safe night riding
- Allows for an optional detachable seat for added comfort
- The scooter’s climbing angle is capped at only 9 degrees
If your city doesn’t cater for electric scooters just yet, you’ll want to opt for a juggernaut that can power through potholes and cracks in the pavement without breaking. This is where the Hiboy S2 comes with its reliable build and dual braking system that gives you full control over the most challenging terrain.
5. Gotrax XR – Long Range Battery
The advances in battery technology have ushered in a new era of electric vehicles capable of going toe to toe with their fuel-powered counterparts. The main issue remains the need to sit through long wait times for a full recharge. This shouldn’t be much of an issue with the Gotrax XR as it comes with a long-range lithium battery rated at 280.8 Wh.
Such battery capacity allows you to push your E-scooter rides to as far as 18.6 miles on a single charge, giving you a longer range than most electric scooters at this price bound.
To take away any guesswork on your end, the Gotrax XR comes with an LED display that lets you know your current battery level at a glance to plan your trips accordingly.
In terms of safety, the Gotrax XR offers a bright headlight that gives you better spatial awareness when driving at night. That’s not all; a rear brake light together with six reflectors makes you visible on the road for a safer driving experience.
Furthermore, Gotrax implements a red safety button to prevent the scooter from folding while on the road. You might wonder how this folding design is different from what we’ve seen on other electric scooters and why it needs such an extra safety net.
The answer lies in Gotrax’s one-step folding design that adds to the e-scooter’s portability, giving you a seamless folding experience.
We can’t just wrap up our review without talking about speed! Thankfully, the Gotrax XR doesn’t disappoint on that front, as it offers a sport mode offering a max speed of 15.5 mph.
You’d imagine the battery performance taking a hit when operating at such high speed; that’s why Gotrax offers an eco-mode that caps the maximum speed at 10 mph to fulfill its battery promises.
- Features a sizable battery capacity allowing for 80 minutes of usage
- Offers a max rider weight of 220 lbs
- Comes with 8.5″ pneumatic tires for a smooth ride
- Tricky to assemble for the first time
With a 280.8 Wh lithium-ion battery, the Gotrax XR is an easy recommendation to commuters traveling long distances. The added battery capacity allows for a maximum travel distance of 18.6 miles, giving you a whopping 80 minutes of continuous usage on a single charge.
6. Hiboy MAX – Best for Climbing Hills
We’ve got yet another entry from Hiboy, and this time around, the MAX, as its name implies, keeps all the fundamentals of the S2 model while bringing some meaningful additions to the table.
For starters, the Hiboy MAX addresses our chief complaint of the S2: its weak performance when it comes to inclined roads. The MAX doesn’t break a sweat when powering through hills with a 15-degree inclination, compared to the 9-degree limit seen with the S2 model.
Besides such a welcome addition, you still get the core Hilboy electric scooter experience you’ve grown to love. The MAX comes with the same 350W brushless motor that allows for a max speed of 19 mph, allowing you to reach your destination faster.
Furthermore, you still get the same dual braking system, an impressive range of 17 miles, and a one-step folding mechanism. Also, Hilboy’s smartphone features are at full display here. The MAX allows you to connect your iOS or Android device via Bluetooth to view your riding statistics or safely lock your scooter.
The only downgrade with the MAX model seems to come in the weight department. Though the motor power remains the same between the S2 and the MAX, the latter has a reworked motor architecture to allow for better performance with inclined surfaces. This brings in some added weight, making the MAX around 4 lbs heavier than its S2 predecessor.
- The 350W motor powers through roads with a 15-degree inclination
- Implements a one-step fold design
- Comes with a companion app for added smart features
The E-scooter is a bit on the heavy side
If your daily commute route involves you climbing sloping roads, the Hilboy MAX is as good as electric scooters under 500 can get. The reworked engine architecture makes a more efficient package that delivers slightly better performance using the same chain-driven motor.
7. Gotrax GXL V2 – Most Portable Scooter
Gotrax manages to snatch another well-deserved spot on our list with its GXL V2, and this time around, the company uses an aluminum alloy to deliver one of the lightest electric scooters on the market.
At an overall weight of 26.4 lbs, the Gotrax GXL V2 never represents a hassle when you’re jumping on the subway or climbing a set of steps. Moreover, it’s impressive that Gotrax has managed to pack a powerful 250W motor in such a lightweight package. This chain-driven motor allows for a max rider weight of up to 220 lbs and delivers a top speed of 15.5 mph.
The electric scooter also follows industry standards in terms of its braking system. You get disc braking combined with ERBS anti-lock system to deliver a smooth, reliable experience that gives you enough stopping power no matter what speed you’re strolling at.
To maintain an overall lightweight profile, the e-scooter goes for an 8.5″ set of pneumatic tires instead of all solid variants seen on other electric scooters like the Jetson Eris. It’s worth noting that flat tires shouldn’t be a concern as the Gotrax GXL V2 features self-healing tires designed to seal any prick holes along the way.
You also get the added shock absorption benefits that transform your riding experience on uneven terrain. Furthermore, the Gotrax GXL V2 offers a digital display with a bunch of glanceable information and controls. For instance, you can turn on the bright LED headlight right at your fingertips, making your night trips much safer.
- Excellent in terms of portability
- Features a 36V lithium-ion battery, allowing for a 12-mile travel distance
- Offers a wide front deck, ensuring the balance and comfort of adult riders
- The flat handlebar gets a bit uncomfortable on extended rides
If the weight of your electric scooter is a key determining factor in your purchase decision, the Gotrax GXL V2 is just for you. The e-scooter keeps a slim, compact profile that enhances micro-mobility and encourages you to forge your own path through the city to reach your destination in no time!
Buying Considerations for Budget Electric Scooters
By now, you should have a solid idea about what features to look for in your next e-scooter. The best electric scooters deliver the most value and balance features and cost proposition. Let’s sum up some of the key points to bear in mind while picking one electric scooter over another.
For the most part, your e-scooter of choice will either come with solid, airless tires or go for pneumatic tires instead. The former requires no maintenance, while the latter allows for a smoother ride on uneven terrain.
Some scooters like the Swagtron SG-5 take an unconventional route and combine the two tire types to combine the benefits of what each type brings to the table.
Choosing a lightweight scooter comes with huge merit! Choosing a foldable electric scooter that seamlessly turns into a compact, lightweight package opens up new opportunities for micro-mobility across the city. You can easily hop on the subway or climb a set of stairs with your electric scooter by your side, allowing you to take shortcuts whenever it’s possible.
Range & Battery Life
To cater to the budget market, e-scooter manufacturers make some sacrifices in terms of battery capacity. However, implementing tricks like a smart battery management system that caps your scooter’s performance whenever your battery is running low helps extend the E-scooter’s range.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is an Electric Scooter Worth It?
YES! E-scooters allow you to cut down your public transportation costs, which means they technically pay themselves off down the line.
How Fast Are Electric Scooters Under 500?
Due to the cost-effective approach in play to deliver a budget e-scooter, most manufacturers can’t pack anything more powerful than a 350W motor. For this reason, the top speed usually ranges from 10-20 mph, with 15.5 mph being the average.
What’s the Acceptable Range for a Budget Electric Scooter?
The average range for a budget e-scooter is usually in the realm of 12 miles. In other words, you get around 40-50 minutes of continuous usage out of your electric scooter before the need to stop for a recharge.
We’re lucky that we live in a time and age where electric vehicles are getting cheaper and more reliable. You don’t have to drop tons of money on an electric scooter to ensure a smooth ride. Instead, budget-friendly models take a smart approach to what key features to include and what can be skipped for a well-rounded experience that satisfies most users.
We made sure our list features a healthy variety of the best electric scooters under 500, allowing you to find a model that works best for your commuting needs. So, whether you’re favoring portability, speed, or range, we have just the right pick for you!