What's new
  • If you don't frequent the chat forum, make sure you read this post regarding land usage. It would be great if we could get everybody to send a comment in before Oct 7th!

Scooter vs ebike? I'd like help deciding.

4PawsHacienda

Member
Joined
Feb 8, 2022
Member Number
412
Posts
24
Location
Greensboro NC USA
Ok, I'm seriously considering adding another ride to the stable. Have had 3 motorcycles for the last 10 years but sold one last summer with the intention of replacing it once I narrowed the list down a bit. Ended up on the proverbial Unicorn hunt. I love the sports tourer concept but ......

Background : I'm 68, retired, in average health. Still ride whenever I feel like it. Live in the outer suburbs to a midsize southern town where it turns rural and also have a cabin along the Blue Ridge Parkway in Virginia. Current motorcycles are a Triumph with a sidecar that I use for everything - groceries, Home Depot runs, ice cream cones with the dog, multi day traveling, riding the country roads around here for the fun of it. At the cabin I have a Honda CB500x, a road oriented dual sport that I thoroughly enjoy and is perfect for the riding I do in that region. Can't say enough good about the bike.We spend an honest 40% of our time in the mountains. I'm not getting any younger physically. I do not ride interstates and avoid urban areas - I have the time and patience to travel the back way. In the mountains there is zero traffic and I usually pleasure cruise slowly.

For the riding I enjoy I don't need or want a bigger motorcycle. I'm torn between a decent electric bicycle (belt drive, internal hub) and a scooter like the Honda Hunter Cub / CT125. Prices are similar enough to be equal in my mind, cargo carrying capacity close enough to equal. With an extra battery the bicycle would probably go four or five hours which is as long as I'm likely to be out anyway. Either can be transported and even charged with my Honda Pickup when the wife and I travel and I could ride some while she indulges in her photography passion.

Ebike pros: a little bit of exercise never hurts, insurance costs moderated, availability of dedicated bike trails and paths in some areas, ATGATT reduced (not eliminated), light trail use possible

CT125 : can keep up with traffic, I have a lifetime of motorcycle experience and equipment. Wouldn't have to eventually buy my wife a ebike also. My brain is hardwiried motorcycle.

I'd love some opinions please.
 

ZoomerP

Old Newb Adventurer
ADV+
Joined
Feb 2, 2022
Member Number
15
Posts
1,715
Location
American Southwest-ish
Tough call. There's enough churn in the e-bicycle market that it's hard for me to point at any model and know it's going to be well supported over time. When the Japanese Big 4 finally get serious about releasing e-motos, I think they'll shake up the small displacement ICE market as well as the e-bicycle market.

An advantage for an e-bicycle could be for your wife's photography, if she'd be willing to ride it on some trails to wildlife. Of course, then you might have to buy a pair if you can't share the same frame size. Pedaling one with a dead battery doesn't look like any fun, so battery endurance is important. Charging from your vehicle might work ok, but I'd run the numbers before assuming you'll get fast enough charge times. Loading & unloading one would be easier than a CT125, not that one of those looks very difficult to maneuver on a ramp. A good e-bicycle won't be cheap, but it'll probably cost less than a CT125.

A CT125 would prevent use on bicycle trails, but I don't know how much that'd bother you. They do well on easy OHV trails, so that's a plus. I don't think you'll find a more reliable gasoline powered two-wheeler. If you'll be in traffic much, it may be a better choice since it's quicker and more visible. If you'll be hauling much, that big flat rack will be better, and a load won't cut into your endurance like it will under battery power.
 

EGR

Well-known member
Joined
Feb 9, 2022
Member Number
474
Posts
218
Location
TN
I’m a couple weeks from BD79. Moderately good at staying fit. My fitness “use it or loose it” curve changed significantly in past recent years - not for easier or better. I’m looking at ebike to try to keep leg strength for the motos.
 
Joined
Feb 8, 2022
Member Number
252
Posts
108
Location
NYC
Get the bicycle so you take longer to die. :pope

Because of the exercise, not the speed. Plus they're so light and you can take them on trails and riding on trails is THE BEST.

My two cents, worth what you paid.
 

Captain Jim

Shiftless
Joined
Apr 3, 2022
Member Number
1041
Posts
130
Location
Tropical Tip of Texas
I'll be 70 next year. I've been riding motorcycles for 55 years, got an e-bike 6 years ago (pedal bikes since I was a kid). They are completely different experiences. I'm not into trail riding with a motorcycle, but we've taken the e-bikes on trails plenty. My experience with the e-bike: yes, your wife will want one; we bought my wife one the day after I got mine. At first, I rode the e-bike everywhere in 4th gear, level 4 pedal assist, at 18 to 20 mph. I didn't realize it, but this pisses off everyone on a bicycle path or a trail. Also the reason some National Parks and city bike paths don't allow e-bikes. We bought folders so they are relatively easy to put in the back of our compact SUV. That said, by the second year, I found myself riding almost always at 10 mph with level 1 pedal assist - better exercise, longer range. Nobody pays any attention to you.

It does not replace a motorcycle (or scooter). I don't know how it is in your area, but cars do not "share the road" well with bicycles around here. Fortunately we live on a small island where I can mostly avoid traffic (gotta watch out for golf carts, though). I do ride my e-bike almost every morning, for the exercise - it is WAY easier on my joints than walking. Forget jogging - the only time you'd see me running is if something wild with fangs and claws is chasing me.

My e-bike has a throttle - I thought I would use that more often. Almost never. That whole "if I get tired I can use the throttle to get home" thing... yeah, most of my rides are 5 to 12 miles, and the battery can handle several days of that before needing to be charged. I can handle all day on my motorcycle seat; not so much on the e-bike. I thought I'd use it once in a while like an electric scooter - I don't. At 20 mph, it is still a bicycle and rides like it.

I like both. But, they are very differernt.
 
Last edited:

matty

Border raider.
Joined
Feb 8, 2022
Member Number
139
Posts
265
Location
England Scotish border
If it were me.. I would buy the Honda no question abut it if i wanted the exercise i would just use a bicycle local .
The Little honda is super simple reliable and competent enough for what road work you will use it for and off road.
About the only place its a negative is on the bike only trails IIUC. Hre i would again use a bicycle. keep one(Or a pair) at the cabin.
Honda Hunter In my opinion..
 

ZoomerP

Old Newb Adventurer
ADV+
Joined
Feb 2, 2022
Member Number
15
Posts
1,715
Location
American Southwest-ish
I do not ride any bicycle on paved roads!
Sadly, I'm starting to see that as the way to go. I used to put in a lot of time on road bicycles, but I'm looking for a gravel bike to get off pavement. I haven't looked at the stats, but riding a bike on the road in the days before widespread use of cell phones felt much safer to me.
 

Captain Jim

Shiftless
Joined
Apr 3, 2022
Member Number
1041
Posts
130
Location
Tropical Tip of Texas
Sadly, I'm starting to see that as the way to go. I used to put in a lot of time on road bicycles, but I'm looking for a gravel bike to get off pavement. I haven't looked at the stats, but riding a bike on the road in the days before widespread use of cell phones felt much safer to me.
That is the reason we bought fat tire e-bikes, to be able to use them on trails. The riding I do each morning on the streets on our small island have little traffic and 10 or 15 mph speed limit. I do NOT ride my bike on streets in town.
 

Amos Malone

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 15, 2022
Member Number
1073
Posts
152
Location
Europe
In my opinion the Hunter Cub seems to be good choice.
In the end you have to decide for your specific needs.
I recently bought Honda SH150i scooter and it's one of the most fun motorcycle I've ever ridden. It's so light and nimble. #AwDang is happy with his Vespa. I also feel that you get more for your money with a scooter than an Ebike.
 

Top Bottom