How Hard Is It To Make Electric Scooters Lightweight?

Daniel Foley
Written By: Daniel Foley
Updated on: 5/19/2024
Published on: 5/23/2022

It's no secret that electric scooters are defining the future of transportation. These sleek, compact, and highly efficient machines are a welcome alternative to the far less environmentally friendly car and bulkier e-bike.

E-scooters come in all shapes and sizes, but one of the top concerns for any rider is whether their scooter offers the right combination of performance and portability. The term 'lightweight electric scooter' is gaining traction in the electric transport world, but what does it mean?

More importantly, can we make an electric scooter lightweight? Well, it's a challenge because every component must balance to ensure the perfect combination of stability and safety while maintaining a focus on speed.

In this guide, we'll break down what defines a lightweight electric scooter, why you should choose one, and the top features you should look for.

What is a lightweight electric scooter?

Electric scooters are, unsurprisingly, highly popular in Europe and the USA. When you think about their design, compact nature, and cost, it's clear that scooters have the edge over cars, motorbikes, and other PEVs.

Portability is a big priority for commuters or city riders, and it's also the determining factor for many buyers.

It seems so easy on the surface. You want a lightweight electric scooter, you choose a foldable model, and you're good to go.

Unfortunately, this isn't the case.

Just because an e-scooter is labelled as 'foldable,' it doesn't mean it's easy to transport. Weight is the most important thing to look at if you're choosing an electric scooter, but there are many components of any scooter that will impact your chosen model's weight.


The components of electric scooters

The main components of an electric scooter that impact its overall weight are:

The motor

An electric scooter without a motor would be just a regular kick scooter. The motor is an essential component, and its capacity will also contribute to the weight of a scooter. For example, a faster scooter will inevitably weigh more, so speedier isn't always better.

The frame and materials

The frame is one of the most essential parts of a scooter because it holds everything together. Most frames are either carbon fiber, titanium, or aluminum - all lightweight materials.

The battery

Your scooter's battery life determines how long it can go between charges. There are scooters with low capacity batteries, which are naturally lighter, and high capacity scooters are often quite heavy.

Most people prefer to find a happy medium that gives them the right combination of range and portability.

Any accessories

Accessories can improve an electric scooter's overall aesthetics and performance - but they're not essential. Premium models will often have extras, such as suspension systems, extra lights, and special LED screens - making the scooter heavier overall.

Why choose a lightweight electric scooter?

There are so many electric scooters around. The best one for your needs depends on your budget, how you're planning to use the scooter and whether it's for practical or fun purposes.

Before looking at what you should consider before choosing your e-scooter, let's look at some of the main benefits lightweight electric scooters have over their larger and bulkier counterparts.

Ease of transportation

For many scooter riders, these relatively new PEVs offer an alternative way to get to work or around the city without paying for an expensive car or dealing with crowded public transport.

While electric bikes have their benefits, scooters are much easier to carry around and are more portable by nature.

Whether you want to split your commute between public transport and your scooter or would prefer to be able to store your scooter at the office, it's much easier than trying to accommodate an electric bike.

More affordable

When you think about the cost of other modes of transportation, scooters are the clear winner when it comes to affordability. Electric cars deliver on sustainability, but the excessive average price tag of $56,000 means they're out of reach for most people.

Electric bicycles range in price, but most would agree that they're more expensive than e-scooters, especially if you want a model that offers a good speed and range.

Most e-scooters are less expensive than e-bikes - especially when they're lightweight models with fewer features.

Better for storage

Another great thing about lightweight electric scooters is that they're often foldable, taking up less space. A folding electric scooter is perfect if you live in an apartment or want to store your scooter in the office.

The most common feature is the folding stem, but some models have collapsible handlebars, making them even easier to store and transport.

They still offer a lot of bang for your buck

Are lightweight electric scooters ever going to be as sturdy or fast as an off-road scooter? No.

But think of it like this; if you choose a car to commute, you'll go for an affordable model that offers great performance and portability.

However, if you were planning to go off-road and enjoy the countryside, you'd probably go for a Ram or Chevrolet truck.

It's no different with electric scooters, and choosing the right model for your needs means you still get to enjoy all of the features.


Things to consider when you're choosing an electric scooter

There are many things to consider when choosing the right electric scooter for your needs, and portability is just one of them. Lightweight electric scooters aren't all made equal, and knowing whether they're right for you will help you decide.

So, with that in mind, here are the things you should consider.

Does a foldable electric scooter always mean it's more portable?

Not all scooters with folding features are lightweight because it ultimately depends on other factors. For example, a scooter might have limited folding capabilities, or it still has a large volume when you fold it because there are so many extra features.

These features might also make the scooter appear bulkier, making it uncomfortable to carry around and impacting its overall portability.

The materials

Three popular materials make up an electric scooter, and they include:

  • Aluminum
  • Titanium
  • Carbon fiber

Each has its benefits and will contribute to your scooter's overall weight and portability.

Carbon fiber

Carbon Fiber Reinforced Polymer (CFRP) is a highly durable material that also manages to be lightweight. As an anisotropic material, it's very flexible and able to adapt to specific design requirements.

Carbon fiber is cost-effective and can dampen vibrations, giving riders a safer experience and making the scooter seem more durable. It's particularly impressive because, for so many advantages, you'd expect carbon fiber to be the heaviest of the materials; but it's the lightest.


Titanium is both temperature resistant and lightweight, making it a popular material for joint replacement implants, aircrafts, pipes, and electric scooters. As titanium is a strong material, it's one of the most popular options for e-scooters, as it's also long-lasting.

Perhaps the best features of titanium include its natural resistance to corrosion and rust, which further enhances the durability and aesthetics of your scooter.


Aluminium is one of the most popular materials globally due to its strength and lightweight properties. Manufacturers everywhere - especially in the transportation sector- use alloyed aluminum to create planes, boats, cars, and electric scooters.

One of the most significant advantages of this material is its versatility, but it can also withstand harsh weather and corrosion. Another considerable benefit of aluminum is how it works as a brilliant conductor and isn't impacted by UV rays.

If you're passionate about sustainability, aluminium is one of the most environmentally friendly materials. With a recyclability rating of 100%, and requires a lot less energy during the manufacturing process.

Which material is best for electric scooters?

All three materials have their benefits, but aluminum is undisputedly the cheaper of the three. You might find some scooter models use a combination of materials, while others can favour one over the others.

The important thing to remember is that all carbon fiber, aluminium, and titanium all have their benefits, and any scooter using one of them will offer more durability.

Are you willing to compromise on some features?

Choosing a lightweight electric scooter shouldn't be a compromise, and in many cases, people often find they prefer a city model rather than an off-road scooter. The differences are simple, including the variations in speed and power.

However, if you're planning to use your e-scooter for commuting or general daily travels, a more powerful scooter will probably be challenging to control and could compromise your safety on busy roads.

The key features of the lightest electric scooters

The secret to reducing an electric scooter's weight is strategic and creative engineering. Scooter brands are constantly encouraging their engineers to find new ways to improve the weight and functioning of an electric scooter without compromising its performance.

There are some standard features you can expect to see in lightweight scooters. Let's take a look at them.

Lithium-ion batteries

Lithium-ion batteries are popular in all-electric scooter models because they're much more effective than their nickel-cadmium counterparts. It makes for a much lighter battery, and lithium also recharges better and requires less maintenance.

While a lithium-ion battery is more expensive than nickel-cadmium, the benefits far outweigh the cons, and these batteries are a central component of lightweight scooters.

Our scooters are so cost-effective because these batteries will withstand the test of time without much maintenance.

Folding mechanism

As we mentioned previously, folding electric scooters are much easier to transport and can therefore seem lighter in design. Some are lightweight, but it depends on your chosen model and its features.

However, a foldable scooter should be lighter in design, as it wouldn't be practical for power scooters to include these features. For example, the Dualtron Thunder 2 has a folding mechanism, but its bulky design means most people wouldn't be able to carry it anywhere.

Of course, the key benefit of any folding electric scooter should be its ease of use. Our Unagi Model One has a one-click folding mechanism, enabling users to press a button, and the entire scooter folds into a portable frame.

Better still, it locks into shape, so you don't have to worry about it. We set out to make a highly portable scooter and achieved our goal.

Capable motors

Nobody wants an electric scooter that feels like a kick scooter, and motor power is one of the most significant factors in choosing a specific model. There has to be a balance between speed and convenience, but we designed the Model One to offer many features for its outright price.

With dual motors of 250 Watts and instant maximum power of 1000W, the Model One doesn't mess around? Is it the most powerful model in the business? No. But is it designed to give you a superior ride quality and serves as the perfect commuter tool.

Supreme construction

The best electric scooters don't shy away from using high-quality materials. As the Unagi Model One is one of the highest-rated lightweight electric scooter models, you can rest assured that this sleek model doesn't skimp on materials.

The Model One goes above and beyond expectations with a premium combination of aluminum and TORAY carbon fiber material. Better still, the incredibly light scooter weighs in at just over 26lbs, making it a popular choice for commuters.

While the carbon fiber stem provides durability and contributes to the scooter's flexibility, an aluminum deck offers supreme comfort without weighing the e-scooter down.


How we define a lightweight scooter

Foldable electric scooters go through various tests to assess their suitability for the road, and every design has a unique purpose. For example, more powerful scooters with high speeds and motors that seem to go on forever will prioritize premium features, while commuter scooters will focus more on reliability and portability.

The best lightweight electric scooters will consistently achieve the perfect balance of design, performance, and convenience. Still, the following factors are part of identifying an average electric scooter or a model that offers a more premium experience.

  • The overall weight
  • Folding mechanism
  • Average range and speed
  • Durability
  • General design

The most portable electric scooters can still be premium models, as long as they offer a better experience than other scooters.

Is a lightweight electric scooter suitable for you?

Hopefully, you now understand the main benefits of lightweight models for electric scooter riders and can decide whether you feel the need for speed and power or if you're looking for a more stable alternative.

Lightweight scooters have many benefits, but the best electric scooter for your personal needs depends on many factors.


Is power or usage more important?

While having the most powerful scooter can seem fun, there's little you can do with it. For example, a scooter of such fast speeds won't be suitable for public roads, so it will serve as a fun way to enjoy off-roading but nothing else.

Choosing the best lightweight electric scooter for your needs will give you more freedom in terms of how you use the scooter, and you'll also be able to enjoy it daily.

Commuters and city riders should consider lightweight scooters because they offer more versatility. But, if you're a speed freak at heart, then a power scooter might give you the adrenaline rush you crave.

How durable is a folding electric scooter?

A foldable electric scooter should always be durable for users, and it's not always a guarantee. For example, you could choose the lightest electric scooter you find, but if the design and manufacturing materials aren't high quality, the scooter won't be a good investment.

If you want to go for the lightest scooters, it's best to ensure the reviews and overall quality are suitable for your needs.

Do you want your child to use the electric scooter?

Before going any further, we have to make it clear that you should always look at the e-scooter laws for your state before allowing a young person to use one. Many regulations state that children must be at least eight years old to use an electric scooter, but this often refers to child-friendly models.

Most states have a law that states a rider must be at least 16 and hold a learner's permit, but some increase the age to 17 or 18.

Riding an electric scooter requires motor skills, and beginners might be better with a model that has a lower top speed. A compact scooter is also better for city riders, but lower battery capacity is the trade-off.

The bottom line

Fuel prices continue to rise, and public transport gets more unbearable with pretty much every trip! Luckily PEVs are stepping up to the plate and providing people with an easier and more accessible way to get around.

Portable scooters are the future, and with advanced battery technology, quality materials, and many other scooter features, it's clear we're only at the start of what will be a fantastic journey.

As technology improves and more people buy electric scooters, e-scooters will likely become better, safer, faster, and a part of everyone's daily travels.

Are lightweight scooters best? Well, they're definitely the more affordable scooter type and most popular for everyday users and offer plenty of benefits.

We'll let you choose for yourself, but if you're searching for the perfect combination of speed and stamina, the Unagi Model One could be the electric scooter of your dreams.

Daniel Foley
Daniel Foley

Daniel tests all the latest e-scooters and currently enjoys the Unagi Voyager as a daily driver for it's light weight, good range, and stylish look.

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