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How much do electric scooters cost? Everything you need to know, whether you're buying or renting

Emma Sims
14 Jun 2022
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They seem to be everywhere nowadays, but how much do electric scooters cost to buy or rent?

Electric scooters are saturating our streets. From teens to commuters to delivery workers, you’d be hard-pressed to miss someone riding an electric scooter when out and about in a major UK city. This is despite the fact that it’s still illegal to use a privately owned electric scooter on public roads, pavements or cycle paths – they can only be used on private land with the consent of the landowner.

However, legislation around the e-vehicles is changing. You can, for example, use rental electric scooters, or e-scooters, on public roads and areas in London, although this is confined to particular boroughs. Public authorities are proceeding with caution when it comes to road safety: according to government statistics, in the year ending June 2021 there were 931 injuries involving e-scooters (732 of which involved the e-scooter riders themselves). 

Nevertheless, if used appropriately and in line with public authority guidance, e-scooters can be a fast, environmentally friendly way of getting around. But how much do electric scooters cost? Should you make do with hiring, or take the plunge and purchase? If it's the latter, should you opt for a budget version or invest in a top-of-the-range model?

Here’s our guide to the pricing of electric scooters and how to choose the best option for you. 

How much do electric scooters cost to buy?

At the cheapest end of the spectrum, electric scooters in the UK start at around £150 to £160 (with kids’ versions available for around £125), although be warned: the quality will reflect the modest price, with limited range and durability. We surveyed the best electric scooters to purchase in our full-length roundup of the best electric scooters to buy in the UK, with recommended options for every price. 

READ NEXT: The best budget electric bike 2022

If you’re looking to snap up a good electric scooter on a tight budget, prices range from around £350 to £450. Crowned the best budget e-scooter in our roundup was the Pure Air Go from Pure Electric, ringing in at a reasonable £349. We lauded this e-scooter for its ability to give more expensive models a run for their money, sporting a wealth of features found in higher-spec rivals, including IP65 water resistance, a maximum weight of 120kg and 10in puncture-resistant pneumatic tyres.

Mid-range scooters, meanwhile, retail around the £450 to £700 mark. Our best buy guide dubbed the £499 Xiaomi Pro 2 the best-value electric scooter on the market. A trusty, relatively lightweight steed with a nifty cruise control feature, its one notable downside is that it can’t be ridden in wet weather. Although whether you’d want to be cruising around in a downpour atop a shelterless electric scooter is another question. 

High-end scooters can cost upwards of £5,000, although a great quality, high-spec one needn’t cost the earth, but will set you back over £700. These premium models tend to package high wattage motors and extensive range into sleek, ergonomic chassis that are lightweight enough to carry with ease and sturdy enough to withstand bumps.

We lauded the £749 Pure Air Pro LR (“long range”) for its, you guessed it, impressive range, which delivers a whopping 37 miles on a single charge. You could get from London to Thorpe Park (and then some) on this electric scooter. 

What affects the price of electric scooters?

The size and quality of an electric scooter's battery have a big impact on its price, which explains why the most expensive e-scooter we recommend also has the longest battery life. Batteries are costly, particularly the bigger ones, so if you’re looking for a long-range electric scooter you should be prepared to fork out a bit more.

Electric motors are another cost-impacting factor. As e-scooters increase in popularity, more focus is being placed on their reliability, which requires a durable electric motor that's able to sustain a few bumps in the road. While electric motors can be manufactured cheaply, a hardy motor will inevitably drive the price up. 

READ NEXT: Are e-scooters legal in the UK?

The set of wheels on an electric scooter will also have a bearing on its cost. A high-quality pair of wheels will set you back more, whether they’re pneumatic (air-filled) – which offer a smoother rise but are susceptible to punctures – or hardier but less comfortable solid rubber wheels. 

Bonus features will bring the price of a model up too, so it’s worth discerning which are important to you and which you view as gimmicks. Many more expensive options have sophisticated cruise control systems, allowing you to remove your hands from the controls sporadically. If you’re someone who values having consistent steering control of your e-scooter, this isn’t a feature worth sinking money into.

The level and quality of waterproofing are other factors that can drive prices up, so consider the climate in your area and the months you anticipate using the scooter. Hill-climbing ability is another important aspect: if you’re planning on riding your scooter in a hilly area, it’s worth looking for a model with strong acceleration that lets you ascend hills of 30 degrees or more.

Browse electric scooters at Pure Electric


How much do electric scooters cost to rent?

If you want to ride an electric scooter but don’t want to commit to purchasing one, or if you’re looking for a cheap and green way to get around town, renting an e-scooter is a great option. 

Transport for London (TfL) has partnered with three electric scooter companies to provide rental rides to the capital: Dott, Lime and TIER. These operators have e-scooters available for hire in the following London boroughs: Camden, City of London, Ealing, Hammersmith & Fulham, Kensington and Chelsea, Lambeth (North only), Richmond upon Thames, Southwark, Tower Hamlets and Westminster. The trial scheme is set to run until November 2022. 

You’ll need a smartphone if you’re looking to rent one of these e-scooters, as usage is controlled via their apps. 

Lime

For Lime, it costs £1 to start each e-scooter journey, with a 15p/min fee thereafter. If you opt for an e-bike, there’s a £1 start cost and the journey costs 19p/min.

Download Lime now


TIER

Head over to the TIER app, and there’s a similar £1 start fee, with e-scooter journeys costing 15p/min after. E-bikes, meanwhile, are £1 to start and 17p/min after.

Download TIER now


Dott

Dott costs £1 to unlock and is 17p/min for e-scooters, and the same price for e-bikes. 

Download Dott now


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