The 2023 Dual-Motor Cruiser Comparison
What is a Cruiser?
Between the lightweight, no-frills commuter scooters and the heavy, performance-focused “beast” scooters sits an interesting class of electric scooters that we like to call “cruisers”. These scooters have dual motors (usually) with higher power output, larger batteries than the typical commuter scooter, and suspension at both the front and rear. Although this adds considerable weight, it also makes for a much more comfortable ride, perfect for the far longer distances they can travel on a single charge, which is why they are referred to as “cruisers”.
Since they’re also foldable, portable and (fairly) lightweight (meaning most riders can lift and carry them over short distances) they are still competent commuters, and it’s no surprise they are what many owners of commuter scooters end up eventually purchasing once they realize their desires for faster speeds, the ability to scale larger hills, a more comfortable ride and longer range are woefully unmet with their first purchase.
Cruisers are generally designed for longer rides and as such usually include features designed to make longer rides more comfortable, like good suspension as mentioned above, but also easily readable displays and handlebars that are adjustable to fit riders of different heights.
Whereas commuters are great for short trips in a downtown setting or to get to the bus/subway station, cruisers are for those that would rather ride a scooter the whole trip to work and back (and stop for groceries on the way home).
How We Compared
With this analysis, we decided to take a close look at the leading electric scooters in 2023 that are considered “cruisers”. We considered only dual motor scooters (with one exception: the EMOVE Cruiser has only a single motor, but also has such a massive battery and is literally called “Cruiser” so we HAD to include it).
The other factor we considered was price: we looked at all dual motor scooters that were around the same price of between $1,500 to $2,000 (although we made an exception here by including the $2,400 Inokim OXO, which we felt deserved a seat at the table because it’s a really well-built machine with great range.
Below is a table showing all competitors and their stats across 17 different categories.
Vig Aesir Max
Apollo Ghost 2022
Varla Eagle One
Kaabo Mantis V2
|Motors||2 x 1,000W||2 x 1,000W||2 x 1,000W||1,000W||2 x 1,000W||2 x 1,000W||2 x 650W|
|Max speed||64km/h (40mph)||55km/h (34mph)||64km/h (40mph)||49km/h (30 mph)||64km/h (40mph)||64km/h (40mph)||53km/h (33mph)|
|Battery cells||18650 LG||18650 Generic Chinese||18650 Generic Chinese||18650 Generic Chinese||18650 Generic Chinese||18650 Generic Chinese||18650 LG|
|Max range**||90km (56 miles)||60km (37 miles)||64km (40 miles)||99km (62 miles)||110km (68 miles)||53km (33 miles)||77km (48 miles)|
|Suspension||Independent dual PU Type-C (rubber torsion)||Dual spring||Dual spring||Dual spring||Independent dual PU Type-C (rubber torsion)||Dual spring||Dual spring|
|Tires||10" x 2.5" with flat-out sealant||10" x 2.5"||10" x 3"||10" x 3"||10" x 2.5"||10" x 2.5"||8.5" x 3"|
|Split rims||Yes||No||No||No (tubeless)||No, but single-sided swing arms||No||No|
|Weight||28.2kg (62.2lb)||29kg (64lb)||35kg (77lb)||27kg (59lb)||33kg (73lb)||29kg (64lb)||25kg (55lb)|
|Adjustable handlebar height||Yes||No||No||Yes||No||No||No|
|Display||3.125" color TFT||2" round color LCD (QS-S4)||2" round color LCD (QS-S4)||2" round monochrome LCD||2" rectangular monochrome LCD||2" round color LCD (QS-S4)||2" round color LCD (QS-S4)|
|Display readable in direct sunlight||Yes||No||No||Yes||Yes||No||No|
|Warranty||2 years (1 year on everything, another year on controller, throttle and display, frame, stem, electrical), 25% off parts for life.||1 year||2 years throttle, controller, frame, 1 year on battery, motors and charger||1 year||1 year||1 year (plus parts 50% for life).||1 year|
Notes on the table above
For each category, the winning spec is in bold.
* For pricing, to keep things as even as possible we took the price direct from the brand’s own website or the top retailer that services and supports from within North America. Pricing data was gathered on the day this article was published.
** Range is what the manufacturer quotes. Always take range with a big grain of salt…the “real-world” range is often quite different (typically 50% to 70% the maximum advertised range). The actual range you’ll get is impacted by your weight, riding in different performance modes, the wind, the temperature, climbing hills, aggressive starts-and-stops and aged batteries. It’s better to ignore the max. range and instead focus on the battery capacity.
1 The Vig Aesir is priced in Canadian dollars, so the price shown in the table is the equivalent USD price as of the day this article was published.
Most scooters are within the range of $1500 to $1700. The Apollo Ghost sits a couple hundred dollars above at $1900, with the EMOVE Cruiser and Inokim OXO sitting well outside this range at $2037 and an eye-watering $2400 respectively.
Best price for a dual-motor cruiser (winner): The Kaabo Mantis V2 at $1499.
The average price for a cruiser is 2023: $1,840.42.
All except one of the scooters we analyzed use a dual 1,000W motor configuration. All of those should have no trouble climbing most hills and accelerate quickly enough that you’ll be want to stabilize yourself on the rear kick plate. Those with a 60V system will have an edge over those with a 52V system from increased torque.
The EMOVE Cruiser has only a single motor so acceleration is slower and it will struggle up some hills. The Vsett 9+R has two motors but they are 650W only, so also won’t keep up with the others.
Winners include all that have dual 1000W motors: Vig Aesir Max, Apollo Ghost, Varla Eagle One, Inokim OXO and Kaabo Mantis V2.
Winners here include those scooters which can reach 64 km/h (40mph), not that we recommend travelling that fast on an electric scooter (but we know there are those out there that do it). If faster is better, then the winners are the Vig Aesir Max, the Varla Eagle Pro, the Inokim OXO and the Kaabo Mantis V2.
The voltage used by the scooter battery doesn’t make a huge difference, affecting only the torque (and acceleration) but not the top speed. Many riders like nimble acceleration even in city streets, so we’ve assigned the two scooters with 60V systems as the winners: Vig Aesir and Kaabo Mantis V2.
A few years ago, generic Chinese battery cells almost universally performed poorly when compared to those by Korean companies like LG and Samsung, or Japanese companies like Panasonic. These days, Chinese cells are much better overall and approach the quality of non-Chinese cells. However, having LG/Samsung/Panasonic cells provides assurance that the battery is of the highest quality, so the winners are the two scooters that use LG cells: Vig Aesir Max and Vsett 9+R.
Watt-hours is a measure of the energy storage of a battery and is calculated based on the battery voltage multiplied by its Ah capacity (V x Ah = Wh). This is the attribute that directly relates to the range one can expect to get with a fully charged battery (although this can also be influenced by things like motor efficiency, controller efficiency and tires).
The clear winner of this category is the EMOVE Cruiser at 1,560Wh, with the Inokim OXO hot on it’s heels at 1,536Wh. Not for behind is the Vig Aesir Max at 1,320Wh. All three are well ahead of the two scooters with the smallest battery capacity: The Apollo Ghost and Varla Eagle One at 946.4Wh each.
Since these are cruisers, we thought it would be interesting to analyze the scooter price versus the battery capacity, so the graph below illustrates this:
As we stated above, the maximum range is somewhat meaningless because it depends on so many factors. Because actual range is impacted by factors like lower temperatures, rider weight and wind, having a larger battery can really help keep range anxiety at bay.
This value is provided by the manufacturer, however there are no standards for how it is measured—though you can count on it being derived under the most favourable conditions (tiny rider, flat roads, slow speeds, etc.) It is interesting to note that the values do roughly correspond to the battery capacity.
The winner (at least the company that quotes the highest range, whether it’s real or not): Inokim OXO.
When it comes to stopping power, hydraulic brakes are the best, hands down. If your scooter goes faster than 50km/h (31 mph) it really should have hydraulic brakes, which is why we’re disappointed one scooter in our list (Vsett 9+R) uses mechanical brakes. Semi hydraulic brakes (used on the EMOVE Cruiser and Kaabo Mantis V2) are cheaper (the entire brake line is a wire that is pulled by the brake lever—only the caliper is hydraulic) but decent. However, the winners are those that use hydraulic brakes: Vig Aesir Max, Apollo Pro, Varla Eagle One, Inokim OXO.
All these cruisers have front and rear suspension, so will provide a ride that is comfortable over curbs, bumps and cracks and even off-road terrain. Rubber torsion suspension was chosen as best because of the low weight, low maintenance, generous travel and smooth cushioning. If you’ve never tried a scooter with rubber torsion suspension, you’ll be delighted with how silky smooth a ride it gives. Winners: Vig Aesir Max and Inokim OXO.
No winners or losers here as none are significantly better than the others. In general, larger 10″ tires will provide a better ride than smaller 8.5″ tires. One interesting note is that the tires on the Vig Aesir Max come pre-treated with Flat-Out sealant, which many recognize as the best way to prevent flats (although it can also be installed in other tires if you’re so inclined).
If a flat does occur, split rims make it so much easier to swap out the innertube, versus pulling the tire over a rim. A split-rim design sandwiches the tire with a rim that comes apart into two halves…the tire can remain between the two rim halves while the innertube (which more easily stretches over one of the rim halves) is replaced.
The winner is the only model that includes split rims: the Vig Aesir Max.
Tubeless tires can’t utilize split rims (tubeless tires count on a vacuum seal which can’t be achieved with split rims). While some will argue that replacing a tubeless tire is way more difficult than replacing an innertube, flats are much less likely with tubeless tires so we’re sharing winner status with the EMOVE Cruiser, which uses tubeless tires.
The Inokim OXO has a brilliant single-sided swing arm design, which doesn’t negate the benefit of split rims, but does make changing flats easier, so we’re sharing winner status with it as well.
When it comes to weight, lighter is always better. While most of these cruisers are within 4kgs (9lbs) of each other, the Varla Eagle One stands out with a massive 35kg (77lbs) weight, and our winner, the Vsett 9+R, weighs in at a svelte 25kg (55lbs).
No winners here as a throttle is a matter of personal preference—although we vastly prefer a vertical thumb throttle. From the informal surveys we’ve seen on the ESG Facebook Group and the ElectricScooters subreddit, most people do as well.
Adjustable Handlebar Height
This is a key ergonomic feature, especially important for comfort on long rides. For comfort and safety, you want your forearms to be as close as possible to right angles. Given that riders come in all different sizes, it’s unlikely that the height of a scooter’s handlebars are going to fit you perfectly, and the taller you are the less likely it is. Scooters are generally made for Asian sizes so shorter North Americans don’t usually have as much of an issue.
Adjustable handlebars are also beneficial when it comes to portability—you can have a long handlebar for riding but shrink it way down when folded up for carrying.
Winners: the Vig Aesir Max and the EMOVE Cruiser.
A larger display makes it easier to read important stats—your speed, gear, lights on/off, dual/single motor mode, etc. A colour display also increases readability of the information, as colour can be used to convey meaning with needing words, numbers or shapes.
The winner here is the scooter with the largest colour display, the Vig Aesir Max.
Display Readable in Direct Sunlight
It never amazes us how many scooter manufacturers don’t care to make the display readable in sunlight, when the scooter will be ridden most.
The Vig Aesir Max, EMOVE Cruiser and Inokim OXO are the winners here.
Features and performance are only good if the scooter is operational. Because there are so many possibilities for things to go wrong on a modern electric scooter, a good warranty is essential. To be fair, not having warranty coverage doesn’t mean it’s game over when something breaks that shouldn’t. It does mean that your out-of-pocket expenses rapidly increase as you become the one to fund the fixes, rather than the scooter company.
The winner here, and by a significant margin, is the Vig Aesir Max. Vig covers the entire scooter front-to-back (except for consumable components like brake pads) for a full year, then key structural components for a further 12 months. In addition, they offer a 25% discount on parts for the life of your scooter. There isn’t a better warranty out there.
Conclusion: The Best Dual Motor Cruiser in 2023
The ultimate champion based on our analysis, winning in 11 categories, is the Vig Aesir Max. It was followed by the Inokim OXO with 7, the EMOVE Cruiser and Kaabo Mantis V2 tied with 4, then the Varla Eagle One with 3. Tied for last place at 2: the Apollo Ghost 2022 and the Vsett 9+R.
The Vig Aesir Max