Can An Electric Scooter Be Too Fast? This One Might Be

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There’s a country song from the 90s that makes it pretty clear that there’s no such thing as “too much fun.” Too much fun is sort of like having a significant other that’s too attractive, or having too much money. Or, it’s like having a car that’s too fast. There are some things in life that we just can’t get too much of. But I think some YouTubers have found an electric kick scooter that might actually be too powerful and too fast.

The scooter is a WEPED SONIC X, and it’s a seriously beefy kick scooter. The whole thing is built from cuts of solid aluminum, no extrusions or castings. It has some seriously thick 13″ tires. It has 4 kW motors front and rear, fed from a 84v (probably 72v nominal) 50 amp-hour (4.2 kWh) battery. Motorcycle parts are all over the thing, too. It has a maximum speed of 80 MPH, which is insane. It even has a horn as loud as a car’s horn.

But this isn’t an Amazon special. It costs $10,000, plus shipping from Korea. It weighs in at 80 kilograms (almost 180 pounds). It’s no child’s toy, and it’s a lot more scooter than most adults (myself included) would want to risk riding. But, for those seeking a quick dose of heavy adrenaline, this might just be the ticket. If you value your life at all, you’ll want full ballistic motorcycle gear. It’s also a good idea to roll your thumb against the thumb throttle instead of pushing it directly, as this helps you modulate the power and be smooth enough to not fly off of it.

In the dark, it has a really cool rainbow LED color system, so it looks downright rad. The guy making the video calls it “full LGBT lighting” (a good thing in my book, but YMMV of course). One thing’s for sure: If you’re not careful with the thing, your pronouns might become was/were. 😂😂

When he loads it into his Ford Ranger, you can get a good idea of how seriously big the thing is. It takes up most of the bed, and the handlebars stick up past the roof. The tops of the wheels are as tall as the bed. So, it could end up being a lot more stable than the average scooter with hockey puck-sized wheels.

Right away, you can see on the helmet cam that this thing is not a Bird scooter. It’s moving faster than my Bolt out of the gate, and he’s taking it easy. He looked to see if there’s multiple power settings to ease into the experience, but this scooter laughs at such things. You paid for the 8 kW, and it wants to put that 8 kW right into the pavement. With a light press, he gets up to 70 kph (almost 45 MPH).

But, even at that speed, he says it feels pretty solid and controllable. The big tires and the heavy weight of the scooter must keep it pretty grounded. He says it feels a lot more like a motorcycle, and feels safer than his Sur Ron. Before long, he felt confident going almost 60 MPH. Then, he mashed the throttle and went even faster, achieving about 70 MPH (the scooter’s likely actual top speed).

On his second run, he jumped up to top speed a lot faster and rode through the turns a lot faster, as his comfort with the scooter had increased. He blows right by a Model X going closer to the speed limit and then flies right on down the road. Even not at full throttle, he went 65 up a hill, and probably could have gone up to 70.

As you’d expect, riding with friends on motorcycles he managed to keep right up with them the whole time, even as the battery was depleted.

Something Like This Could Actually Be Practical

I know myself, and I think I’d probably do something dumb on this scooter and die. But, that having been said, I think there’s a role for fast and heavy scooters in the transportation system. Hear me out!

First off, The biggest thing keeping people from wanting to ride e-bikes is infrastructure. Without good routes to go on that don’t force you to “share the road” with distracted Karens in 4000 lb vehicles, most people just aren’t confident in it. Unless you can keep up and not get run over, it’s an iffy experience. But, when used responsibly, this thing would have no problem keeping up with cars in town, and you’d be able to integrate yourself into a safe traffic flow just like a motorcycle.

It’s obviously not just a “last mile” solution like most kick scooters, either. Depending on how long one wants to stand up and ride, it could probably serve a fairly long commute. But, you’d likely need a secure place to park it, as it’s still pretty stealable. So, you’d need to get permission from the boss to bring it inside, which might not be easy given its size.

But, to get there, some regulatory changes would likely be needed. As of now, scooters like this are legally limited to about 28 MPH, like a class 3 e-bike. It’s unlikely in most places that police would bother you for going 30-40, but they’d likely get a little too interested in you if you blew by them going 70 MPH.

So, as I’ve pointed out before, a new vehicle category of some kind would need to be carved out in the law for them. Just like e-bikes that go faster than a Class 3 bike but not as fast as a full motorcycle, there needs to be some kind of an easy to apply for license and registration for these. If we make them as hard to ride as motorcycles (special license with driver’s ed again), people won’t be interested. But, if we can come up with a compromise on that, people would comply instead of just riding illegally.

So, we need to work with legislatures to get this done right instead of letting a big problem be created while we miss out on the benefits.

Featured image: a screenshot from the embedded YouTube video. Fair use, commentary.

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Jennifer Sensiba

Jennifer Sensiba is a long time efficient vehicle enthusiast, writer, and photographer. She grew up around a transmission shop, and has been experimenting with vehicle efficiency since she was 16 and drove a Pontiac Fiero. She likes to get off the beaten path in her "Bolt EAV" and any other EVs she can get behind the wheel or handlebars of with her wife and kids. You can find her on Twitter here, Facebook here, and YouTube here.

Jennifer Sensiba has 1951 posts and counting. See all posts by Jennifer Sensiba