Choosing A Scooter

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Mobility scooters can offer you a great deal of independence. There are many different types available and prices can range from under £400 to over £5,000, depending on the size and quality of the scooter.

Because there’s so much variety, it’s important to think about what will suit you before you buy. Find a scooter that’s comfortable, easy to use and suited to what you want to use it for.

Mobility scooters for the pavement

Scooters you can use to travel on pavements and in shopping areas are called Class 2 scooters. If you live near a high street and you can get to your destinations by avoiding roads, this may be a good choice. Class 2 scooters are smaller, lighter and often cheaper than those designed for the road, and can have three, four or, in some cases, five wheels. Although some models are capable of much faster speeds, they should be driven at 4mph on pavements – and some models may also allow you to cap the speed level to this legal limit.

Folding boot scooters

These are small mobility scooters, also for use on pavements only, that can be folded or taken apart for transporting. They are sometimes referred to as ‘boot’ scooters. If you can drive or have access to a car and you’re looking for something to take you short distances, perhaps to go shopping in a town centre or for a day out with your family, a boot scooter can be a good choice. There are two types: folding and dismantling. Folding scooters allow you to reduce them to a compact shape and wheel them, like a wheelie case. This makes them particularly convenient for air travel. Dismantling scooters are made up of four or five sections that have to be taken apart for travel or put together before they can be used. Despite their portability, all models tend to be heavy to lift, so if you’re likely to need help lifting yours in and out of a car, buy a car hoist or arrange for someone else to do it for you.

Folding versus dismantling mobility scooters

Weight is a particular issue with folding scooters, as you normally have to lift them as one piece. Removing the battery and armrests would reduce their weight by a couple of kilograms, but they will remain heavy to lift. Our testing has found that the disadvantage of their weight can outweigh the benefits of easy folding and unfolding. We also found that lightweight scooters can be less comfortable to ride, as they’re not as good at absorbing the bumps in the road. Lighter folding scooters can feel more flimsy and less secure than dismantling scooters. In contrast, dismantling scooters allow you to lift each component separately. However, you do need to reassemble dismantling models before riding them, which you may find inconvenient. Boot scooters are less powerful than those that can be driven on the road (see below), which makes them better suited to short journeys (normally of less than 10 miles). They are light and manoeuvrable, and can be used indoors, but their smaller, less-padded seats often mean they’re not as comfortable as larger models. Their wheels may also struggle with shallow kerbs. The ease of lifting a scooter in and out of a car, and how they handle on kerbs and different terrains, are just three of the things we check when carrying out our.

Mobility scooters for the road

Mobility scooters for the road are Class 3 vehicles. They are larger and heavier than their Class 2 cousins. You can drive them on any roads except motorways or dual carriageways that have a speed limit of 50mph or above. The maximum speed at which you can drive your scooter on a road is 8mph (it’s 4mph for pavements). Being more powerful, with bigger batteries, means they are suited to longer journeys (up to 25 miles) and can cope better with hills. They have front and rear lights, indicators, hazard lights, a rear-view mirror, brakes and a horn. They tend to provide a more comfortable ride than some of the smaller scooters.


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