In a Nutshell:
Smartscoot Travel Scooter is an above-average, travel-friendly scooter that falls slightly short of greatness. It is recommended for anyone weighing up to 300 pounds who isn’t brand conscious, plans to use it mostly in urban (paved/indoor) environments, and who loves the aesthetic this scooter brings to the table.
- Surprisingly fast
- Easy to use and master
- Stainless steel construction!
- The range is underwhelming It’s expensive It’s only moderately comfortable
- It’s expensive
- It’s only moderately comfortable
Do you enjoy travel? Has your mobility issue forced you to do less of that? If it has, then you’ve probably been on the hunt for a portable, lightweight, travel-friendly mobility aid that you can hit the road or fly the friendly skies with, and your search may have led you to consider the SmartScoot portable scooter.
It’s easy to understand why.
Although SmartScoot is a smallish, off-brand, it is a popular option. The balance of SmartScoot reviews you find on the internet tends to sing its praises.
We’ll readily admit that it’s a very good scooter. In our view, it falls short of greatness, but it is quite good. It may be the case that it’s a perfect fit for you and exactly what you’re looking for in a mobility aid. If so, that’s fantastic, and you should absolutely buy one.
Here though, we’re going to take a contrarian view. While everything above is absolutely true, it’s also true that there are better and more cost-effective options available.
For instance, Glion’s Snap n Go Scooter ((insert a link to the Snap n Go Review)) can be considered a peer product. It’s also an off-brand and features similar styling, but it also costs hundreds of dollars less and is, in many ways, a slightly superior machine.
What we’re saying is; things are a little more complicated than they first appear. If you look at this product in isolation, it’s easy to fall in love with it. If you compare it to comparable products on the market, the waters start getting muddy quickly.
In this review, we’ll take a close look at everything this model has to offer, and we won’t pull any punches when it comes to describing the places it comes up short. Then, you’ll have all the information you need to make the best decision for you. If that sounds good, read on, and let’s jump right in!
An Overview of the SmartScoot Lightweight Travel Scooter
First impressions matter, and the SmartScoot travel scooter definitely makes a good one.
There’s nothing particularly bold about its three-wheeled design, which is fairly conventional, but its stainless steel construction and black accents give it a bold, industrial look that many people love. If you’re a fan of the aesthetic, then right off the bat, this machine is going to draw you in.
Before we can talk about more than simple aesthetics here in this section of our SmartScoot review, we’re going to have to dig a little deeper and check out the numbers behind the design. Here’s a quick overview of what makes this model tick:
- Overall Product Dimensions: 39” H x 38” L x 22” W (Folded dimensions: 30.5” H x 38” L x 22” W)
- Seat Dimensions: 17” W triangular bicycle seat
- Turning Radius: 26.”
- Seat to Floor Height: 17”, 19” or 21.”
- Top Speed: (3 Settings: Setting 1: 3 mph, Setting 2: 5 mph, Setting 3: 7 mph)
- Range: 12 miles to a charge
- Wheel Size: 8” front, 7” rear
- Ground Clearance: 3.”
- Chair Weight: 39.5 pounds
- Maximum Supported Weight: 300 pounds
There’s not a thing in the world wrong with any of these numbers, but there are a few things to draw your attention to, especially if you’re comparing and contrasting this with the Glion Snap n Go.
First, this one weighs slightly more, and for the added weight, you don’t get any additional supported weight. Both models can support up to 300 pounds, and you can freely ignore anything you read that indicates a 250-pound weight limit for this model. We confirmed this information with the company direct.
This one has a slightly inferior range (12 miles to a charge vs. 15 for the Snap n Go). On the flip side, this model offers one additional mile per hour in terms of top speed (7 here vs. 6 for the Snap n Go).
In addition to that, this model also has a superior turning radius and a slightly superior ground clearance, but there’s no tread on the wheels here. Also, this model would struggle on even slightly damp grass as a result. The seat design on this model is also decidedly inferior.
Adjustability and Comfort of the SmartScoot Travel Scooter
This is an exceptionally strong portion of our SmartScoot Lightweight travel scooter review. There’s a lot to like here. First and foremost, the seat height is adjustable. Simply pull the support pin out, and you can set the seat height to one of three settings: 17,” 19” or 21” as you prefer.
On top of that, the height and the angle of the steering tiller can both be adjusted to taste. There’s about 2” of play in the height of the seatback, so you can modify it slightly to ensure that it’s hitting your back where you want it to be.
Put all of that together, and you end up with a surprisingly adjustable machine.
The SmartScoot foldable mobility scooter doesn’t fare as well in terms of comfort. It doesn’t have armrests, and it features a triangular, bicycle-style seat that’s padded with a modest amount of conventional block foam with vinyl stretched over it.
The seatback has no padding at all and seems to have been borrowed from a mesh task chair. It’s literally identical to the seatbacks you commonly find on mesh office task chairs.
That’s not the end of the world. The mesh backing does have the advantage of excellent breathability, but this isn’t the kind of scooter you’ll want to spend several hours at a stretch in. It’s designed to get you where you’re going, assuming that you’ll transfer to some other type of chair to kick back and relax in.
Extras and Options of SmartScoot Mobility Scooter
This is another fairly strong section of our SmartScoot travel scooter review. Normally, you don’t find many built-in extras when it comes to products offered by smaller brands. SmartScoot is one of the happy exceptions to that rule of thumb. The base model comes with:
- An electric horn
- A “headlamp.”
- A “luggage rack.”
- Two cane holders (left and right)
- And a basket
We put quotes around a couple of those items because the headlamp really isn’t. It’s excellent that the company put a light of some kind on the scooter, but this is actually more of a penlight mounted to the frame.
It’s too small to be all that useful, though it would probably be sufficient to extend your riding time into dusk, but definitely not full dark.
Similarly, the “luggage rack” only has about a 20-pound capacity and is too small to genuinely tote luggage on. Even so, it’s a useful platform that you can haul a few items on, and more storage is always welcome. Pro-tip: You’ll probably want to keep a couple of bungee cords handy to strap items down to your “luggage rack.”
The two cane holders are a nice touch, and the company located one on each side of the steering tiller. So whether you’re right or left-handed, you can make good use of it. The basket is, of course, entirely self-explanatory. It’s mounted on the front of the scooter and also crafted from stainless steel. Even better, it’s big enough to be genuinely useful.
Unfortunately, that’s it.
There are no other SmartScoot accessories available from the vendor directly, but of course, there are innumerable ways you can personalize and accessorize your scooter via the aftermarket.
A Few Words About Price of SmartScoot Portable Scooter
As we mentioned at the outset, the SmartScoot scooter is significantly more expensive than its closest cousin, the Glion Snap n Go. The difference is sufficient that we thought it would be useful to create a separate section in this review to discuss the reasons why and mention a few other implications.
The single biggest driver of added cost where this unit is concerned is the fact that it is constructed using stainless steel, which not only looks great but is incredibly sturdy and lightweight. That’s a good combination. For some people, putting that together with the nominal increase in speed and the good turning radius makes this model an attractive option.
The other thing to consider is this: SmartScoot has made quite a name for itself. Again, although they’re a smaller brand, the SmartScoot scooter is pretty popular, which means that there are a fair number of used SmartScoots for sale. If you decide you really want one, finding a used one might be the way to go as you’ll be able to get it for a significant discount.
Finally, if you’re just absolutely in love with the brand, then the fact that it’s pretty easy to find used scooters online means you’ll generally have an easy time finding SmartScoot parts. If something should break, you shouldn’t have any difficulty getting what you need to make repairs.
Portability & Ease of Use
The SmartScoot mobility scooter is marketed as the lightest scooter in the world. It’s not. The Glion is marginally lighter, and others are right at the same weight or slightly lighter.
Even so, as mobility scooters go, the SmartScoot is pretty travel-friendly. Weighing in at just under 40 pounds, it’s not at all difficult to find manual wheelchairs that are heavier. This model has a small enough footprint that you can stash it in the trunk space of almost any mid-sized sedan.
Storage is even easier if you have a truck, van, or SUV, so it gets high marks for that.
It’s also very easy to use.
The controls are simple and intuitive. Its tight turning radius is ideal for use in smaller homes or apartments, tiny homes, and even RVs. That’s excellent!
Pros & Cons of SmartScoot Foldable Mobility Scooter
Although the SmartScoot portable scooter falls short of greatness, it is an undeniably good product and brimming with extras, even if some of them aren’t implemented as well as we would have hoped. The company does, however, get an ‘A’ for effort in our book.
In our view, these are the strongest features of the design:
- Surprisingly fast
- Easy to use and master
- Stainless steel construction!
- Lots of extras
And these are the scooter’s weakest points:
- The range is underwhelming (not bad, but definitely not best in class)
- A few of the extras aren’t implemented very well
- It’s only moderately comfortable (bicycle seat, unpadded backrest, no armrests)
- And it’s expensive compared to models with similar features.
The price is far and away the most significant of the drawbacks and may wind up being a dealbreaker for some. We’ve got a small brand asking a hefty premium for a good scooter that falls short of greatness, so the central question is: Is it worth it?
SmartScooter Review Conclusion
Ultimately, the answer to the question posed in the last section of our SmartScoot review is ‘it depends.’ Primarily, it depends on what features are most important to you.
If you fall in love with the aesthetic of the scooter, it’s probably worth the extra money. If you can use all the built-in extras and are willing to pay a bit more to get that one extra mile per hour top speed, or if you live in a smaller home or apartment and really need the tight turning radius, it’s probably worth it.
On the other hand, if you’re on a budget and looking to acquire something similar, you can save hundreds of dollars and not really give up much by considering a product like the Snap n Go.
It’s functionally similar, nearly as fast, and actually more comfortable.
Given all that, we can only give this model a provisional recommendation.
Comparable Products to Consider
As we mentioned earlier in this review, if you like this model, but can’t quite afford it, then a fantastic, functionally similar alternative to consider is the Glion Snap n Go.
One other possible alternative would be the iLiving V8. While its styling is significantly different, it may be a good fit for you and save you money.
References & Resources:
- SmartScoot, Official Brand Website
- Mobility Scooters in Urban Environments: A Research Agenda, NCBI
- The Experience of Being a Motorised Mobility Scooter User, Taylor & Francis Online
- 6 Benefits of Having an Electric Mobility Scooter, SWAAY
- Should I Buy a Mobility Scooter, Which?