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What is the Difference Between a Gas and an Electric Scooter?

An electric scooter is plugged into an outlet to recharge.
Gas scooters typically can carry more weight and travel faster than electric models.
Gas scooters have engines that are basically simplified car engines.
A scooter.
Article Details
  • Written By: Holly Collins
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 25 October 2014
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The difference between a gas scooter and an electric scooter is the way in which they are powered. Gas scooters are propelled by a motor that converts gasoline into energy and electric scooters are propelled by a motor that generates energy from electricity. Many types of gas and electric scooters are available, ranging from recreational toys suitable for older children, to motorcycle-like options offering real life transportation abilities.

Gas scooter engines are generally simplified car engines that burn gasoline to power the scooter. This type of scooter is very fuel-efficient with a much higher mile per gallon rating than a car. Their engines are louder than electric scooters and not as environmentally friendly. Electric scooters use rechargeable batteries to power their motors. They are very quiet and result in no toxic emissions.

Both types of scooters come in a wide variety of price and model options. Generally, when referring to the smaller engine scooters designed for children’s recreational use, a gas scooter will provide more hill-climbing power and is able to carry more weight at faster speeds. Electric scooters can achieve comparable speeds in flat areas but are often slower on inclines. Weight limits on smaller electric scooters can also be lower than those gas scooters provide.

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Another difference between a gas and an electric scooter is their run times. Depending on the size of the electric scooter’s battery, they often have less continuous drive time than their gas counterparts. This holds true for the smaller toy-sized models as well as the larger motorcycle-comparable varieties. Average operational time for a toy-sized gas scooter is about 40 minutes. Larger motorcycle-type electric scooters usually have about a 60 mile (96.6 km) capacity before they need recharging.

This is not to say that drive time in electric scooters is inadequate, as most are easily recharged at a standard electrical wall outlet. Recharging an electric battery is less expensive than purchasing fuel, making operating costs another difference between an electric and gas scooters. Both gas and electric scooter motors are easily repairable.

The difference between gas and electric scooters' effect on the environment is significant. Gas scooters are not held to the same emission standards as cars, and their toxic outputs can be considerably higher. Electric scooters produce no toxic emissions, running completely clean. Electric scooter motors also run almost silently, whereas gas engines can be loud.

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