Are electric scooters street legal?
Electric scooters are not classified as full motor vehicles and therefore it is unusual that you would have to have any form of registration or license in order to legally ride it on streets.
This is generally based on the motor power the electric scooter is equipped with and its top speed. The Federal Law of 2002 in the US states that if an electric bike has a top speed of no more than 20 mph and a motor power of less than 750W, it will be classified as street legal.
If your electric scooter falls into this range then it will also be street legal and will not require license or registration in most states.
Electric Scooters Laws requirements in Various States
- Law in ca
- LAW IN FL, IL, VA, OH,OR
- Law in GA, TX, WA
- Law in MI
In California, the term is “motorized scooter”. This is classified as any vehicle that has a deck, handlebars, an electric motor and is designed to be stood up when ridden. These are not classed as motor vehicles and therefore do not need license and registration.
Electric scooters can only be operated on a trail, bicycle path, or bikeway. You are not allowed to operate an electric scooter on the sidewalk. They can be used on roads that do not have bicycle lanes as long as the speed limit for that road is no more than 25 mph.
The person driving must be at least 16 years old and must wear properly fitted bicycle helmet meeting regulated safety standards. In New York, electric bikes and scooters are completely illegal for use in public. Wherever you live, we highly recommend checking your state’s law to find the exact rules and regulation you have to abide by.
Ride only with a permit, a driver’s license or State identification card. The rider must not be younger than 16 and he/she will have to ride on bicycle lanes and bicycle paths. That means you can ride where bicycles go. The electric street scooter you buy must have a lamps and reflectors for night ride.
When it comes to Texas, they welcomed electric scooter as a new mode of transportation. You can ride electric scooters everywhere where you can ride bicycles, and you can also ride them on sidewalks and on streets with max speed of 35mph.
Law in GA, and WA: Ride only with a permit, a driver’s license or State identification card. The rider must not be younger than 16 and he/she will have to ride on bicycle lanes and bicycle paths. That means you can ride where bicycles go. The electric street scooter you buy must have a lamps and reflectors for night ride.
Michigan has a similar situation to California. You can ride a scooter, but only on streets with speed limits below 25mph. If you ride it during the night, you must have a front light visible as far as 500 ft. Reflector on the back must be visible as far as 600 ft and a red light must be visible next to the reflector.
Also, only one rider is allowed on a single scooter and riders under 12 years of age can't ride electric scooters on the road.
Electric Scooters Laws requirements Internationally
- Canada Law
- UK law
- AUSTRALIA and NZ
In Canada, motorized bicycles and scooters are classified under federal law and each province can make minor changes such as age requirements and each municipality can make changes as to where they are permitted to be used.
Electric bikes and scooters are generally legal in Canada. These vehicles are also known as power-assisted bicycles, electric scooters, e-bikes, and e-scooters, and the laws for them are very similar to traditional bicycles. They require no license, plates or insurance to own or operate.
You can use electric scooters on private land but when it comes to using them in public things gets a little stricter. As they have no pedals they aren’t able to be used on the pavement and as the low powered they can’t be used on the road.
The laws in the UK are technically a little stricter. No electric scooter is legal in UK. You can use electric scooters on private land but when it comes to using them in public, things get a little stricter. As they have no pedals they aren’t able to be used on the pavement and as the low powered they can’t be used on the road.
When it comes to Queensland and NZ, they are legal there, but only kids above 12 can ride it with their parents supervising and teens above 16 can ride it alone. The good thing is that you don't need a license for it if you are over 16 years old. The top speed of a street legal scooter is 25mph and you have to have a helmet and lights for the night rides. But you aren't allowed to ride it on the road or bike lanes, only on the paths.
When it comes to New South Wales, for now, there are electric scooters illegal on the street but you can use it on private land. This can change in the future. That is the only electric road scooters part in Australia where they are illegal.
Victoria has a similar story as Queensland so you can see electric road scooters in Melbourne traffic. The only difference is that every electric scooter with a top speed above 10mph needs to be registered if you want to ride it on the street.
Double Check the Law in Your State!
Laws are constantly changing. We're not lawyers and you need to double check the laws in your state or country.
With that said,
Here is a list of the best electric scooters that are street legal.
Best Street Legal Electric Scooters
3-wheel Electric Scooter Street Legal - Swagtron Cali Drift Electric Scooter
The only 3-wheel model on this list is a Cali Drift model made by Swagtron. It is an electric scooter street or sidewalk, depending on where you are. The top speed of this scooter is 15.5 mph and it can ride you for around 9 miles before the battery is dead.
When you reach the destination you can simply fold the scooter and store it in a safe place. You can carry it because it weighs only 22 lbs, but it can carry around 265lbs of the load.
See Swagtron Cali Drift in Action
The design of this electric scooter for road use is pretty cool. It comes with a yellow/black handle and a colorful foot deck which is wide enough for both of your feet This is the best electric street scooter if you are looking for something simple, yet attractive.
The best part about this electric street scooter is the fact that you can easily adjust the height of the handle so you can adjust the height of the scooter to every family member.
This electric road scooter has the great top speed to get where you want quickly.
The 9-mile range should be a little longer.
- Enhanced Stability. Enjoy the enhanced stability of a 3-wheel configuration and spacious deck,...
- Breezy maneuverability. Adjust the height of the handlebars to accommodate you. The unique shape of...
- Drift for miles. Featuring a 250W motor, This three-wheel electronic scooter scale 8-degree INCLINES...
Small Electric Scooter Street Legal - EcoReco M5
The M5 is an electric kick scooter from EcoReco, a company that launched their first product on Kickstarter in late 2013. This is one of the convenient ways to solve the “last mile” challenge that many commuters face. It’s smooth, relatively quiet and super durable with solid rubber tires that can’t get flats. The unit weighs 35.5 pounds and folds quickly and easily but still feels solid during operation.
The power for the EcoReco M5 street legal electric scooter comes from a 250-watt direct drive hub motor built right into the rear wheel. That may not sound like a lot but the maximum output is 750 watts and given the 36-volt battery the motor feels quite capable. Maximum rider weight is listed at 250 pounds and depending on your weight; the unit may operate under the 20 mph listed top speed.
Operating the EcoReco M5 is about as easy as it gets. Once the battery has been charged up, you press the on/off button on the display pad for two seconds and the LCD lights up showing your speed, battery level, trip distance, odometer, numerical speedometer and charge cycle counter. The display is a bit angled down. This seems to be the best layout for folding the bars but is not optimal for operation. Since the throttle is physically mounted to the display pad and LCD screen, the view angle is impacted as you tilt it forward or back.
The battery level is easy to read once you stop the unit completely to make sure you’ve got enough juice to get home. The brake lever is fairly standard and does include a motor inhibitor which means it will cut power to the motor when activated for safety. There is only one brake which is a mechanical located in the rear wheel. It works fine in my experience but wasn’t skidding the tire or anything. Note that both tires are replaceable and you can even choose from red or black plates and springs to fully customize the ride.
Adjustable telescoping stem makes the scooter easy to handle for short or tall individuals and feels pretty solid at both extremes. It comes with an excellent 2-year warranty on the frame and suspension fork, a solid 6-month warranty on the battery pack.
There is no way to really lock the scooter’s electronics, anyone could turn it on and tamper with the display (which is not removable) although they’d have to get it moving to activate the throttle so not a huge deal, you can physically lock the scooter to bike racks by going through the front wheel space.
Fastest Street Legal Electric Scooter - Ninebot by Segway KickScooter ES2
This is a great scooter that has 15 miles per hours top speed so I would recommend it for an older teenager or an adult. The motor is estimated at 300 watts.
You can limit the speed by holding the on/off button to set it in economy mode, normal or sports mode, or if you want you can set an exact speed-limit within the mobile application, for your child to be safe. This Segway street legal electric scooter can be folded in just a second and stored almost anywhere. It weighs 28 lbs.
It has two sets of lights, the ambient and front and tail LED lights which are fun but also safe for night rides. The rider is visible at low light, too. The lights can be customized through the app. The Bluetooth connection through your phone allows firmware upgrades and much more, too. You can add a second external battery that attaches to the stalk to increase total range from 15.5 miles to 28 miles which are faster than most of the scooters on the market and you can get to your destination faster.
Make sure if you are using this scooter as a street legal option, not to cross speed limits. The battery needs 3.5 hours to recharge. This scooter has rear shock absorbers for a smooth ride. A great thing, many scooters don't feature, is the locking via an app.
When you download the app and connect it to the scooter, one of the locking options will appear on the screen. Simply press it and the scooter will be locked. The wheels will be heavier to drag. The tail light will start blinking. Your phone will vibrate the moment the wheels start moving.
You can easily upgrade this Segway electric scooter with an externally battery-pack and get a lot more out of it. Front and rear absorption shock reduction from bumps while riding on uneven terrain makes the drive safer and more enjoyable.
The steep hill upwards up to 10% are no problem for ES2, if it is steeper you have to support manually.
- Ride Faster & Further: With a powerful motor of 300W, the Segway ES2 KickScooter can reach to 15...
- Lightweight & Foldable: With a total weight of 27.6 lbs (12.5 kg) and the one-click folding system,...
- Safe & Comfortable Riding: Front and rear wheel shock absorbers equipped with large solid tires...
Road Legal Electric Scooter For Adults - Micro Merlin Electric Scooter
This is 24 lbs light street legal electric scooter with a range of 15 miles. The energy comes from a 500-watt motor and 36v battery. It can take 220 lbs of weight.
This scooter has the top speed of 15.5 mph and range optimal for most commutes, while also being light and compact enough to fold and carry when needed. The Merlin has 4 different ride settings for every riding condition. The Eco mode maximizes range at the expense of power and top speed, the Sport mode maximize power for hills at the expense of range.
The standard mode balances both speed and range. Standard is the mode it is set on when you receive it. After 5 seconds cruise control will maintain the speed you are going until you change it on purpose. This electric scooter for adults street legal has 8-inch solid rubber tires which give a smooth riding experience. The front and rear suspension and the ergonomic hand grips combine to deliver great riding experience. The smooth ride allows you to go further and faster more safely without feeling tired or aching.
The regenerative front brake charges the battery as you brake and will become the brake you use most to slow or stop. This very easy to learn and use a scooter. For stopping quickly use the rear foot brake and front brake together. A full charge for battery from zero takes just under 3 hours, but it only takes one hour if the battery has more than a 25% charge if you are in a hurry.
This is a bit expensive scooter so consider what you get and your budget money.
Cheap Street Legal Electric Scooter - Tian Run Electric Scooter
This street-legal electric scooter gets the power from a 250-watt motor and a high capacity of 8.8Ah battery. It's a great alternative to the car for short commutes because it can speed from 10-15 mph for a range of 8-15 miles.
The speed ranges on 3 levels for different requirements and you choose it through an LCD display. The display also shows you the battery level and time. The Tian scooter is made of carbon fiber and therefore it is very light, it weighs only 16 lbs. The easy to fold design contributes to this portability feature. You can store it at home so it doesn't take much space or carry it in your hand when you need to.
The battery needs 3-6 hours to refresh and you can ride your scooter again. The scooter handles your adult weight up to 264 lbs and slopes and hills of 20 degrees incline. On the front handlebar here is a big LED light that envisions the road and the rider at night which is a must according to electric scooter laws Los Angeles.
The large 5.5 inches front tire and 5 inches rear tire is made from solid rubber and work as good shock absorbers with anti-slip treads.
When you need to stop the scooter, press the front hand brake or step on the rear brake. Another great thing is you get a 1-year warranty which will cover any problems you have.
This is a very affordable scooter with features like many scooters in the high-class range. Tian run is lightweight and portable so you won't have trouble with storage, parking or dragging around.
Many customers came out saying the products come with bad instructions like changed stickers for left and right handlebar sides.
- 【 Fast Speed & Long Range 8.8Ah Battery 】 - High capacity of 8.8Ah Battery with a maximum travel...
- 【 3-Level Speed and LCD Display 】- 3 levels of speed to meet your requirement and LCD display...
- 【 3 seconds Portable Fold-n-Carry Design 】- It is made of Carbon Fiber that weighs only16 lbs....
Electric Scooters Street Legal We Also Recommend
- SUPERIOR PERFORMANCE - The electric scooter features an upgraded 350 Watt motor, boasting an 18. 6...
- ONE-STEP FOLD DESIGN - With 1-second foot-actuated folding, the electric scooter can be quickly...
- SAFETY AND COMFORT - Braking is smooth and secure. The excellent braking system makes the brake...
- [SCOOTER REPAIR PROGRAM]- Launching of Repair Programme for M365 Mi Electric Scooter with the Hook...
- [EXTREMELY FAST AND LONG-RANGE BATTERY LIFE] - A 250W motor propels the e-scooter to a max speed of...
- [PORTABLE FOLDING DESIGN] -Weighs just 26. 9 lbs. Portable folding design for easy storage at home...