While eBikes are already legal to use on British roads, electric scooters are classified differently, which means you can’t legally ride an eScooter on the road (or the pavement, for that matter) in the UK.
That could soon change thanks to a Department for Transport consultation on the future of mobility, which is looking at ways of improving urban transportation. While some people don’t approve of electric micro-scooters, it seems obvious that they could provide a clean and efficient way of moving people around towns and cities.
Electric scooters are ideal for shorter journeys and the main advantage they offer over eBikes is that they are comparitively small and light, so they are easier to store and can be more readily carried on public transport – especially since they usually fold down.
They’re also inexpensive. The popular Xiaomi Mi electric scooter costs under £400, with a top speed of 15.5mph (the same as the legal limit for eBikes) and has a battery range of approximately 18 miles. If it were road legal, this kind of vehicle could revolutionise urban transportation for many people; imagine being able to do a five mile trip to work in under 30 minutes without driving or cycling.
The report also encourages further investement in e-cargo bikes for local delivery services.