EcoReco M3 Electric Scooter—Tool or Toy?
I’m sure electric scooters have been around for quite a long time. Ever since EcoReco approached me to try out their new M3, I’ve thought back to different ones I’ve seen and people I know who have them. What seems different about this one is the level of sophistication and performance it has. The fit and finish match the power and range in the best of ways.
In addition to giving you knowledge about it and my impressions, I intend to answer the question raised in my title. Although a electric scooter might not be on your list of needed items, you might consider thinking about what it can do for you. Smooth and solid, fast and far, different and noticeable, the EcoReco M3 can cover a wide range of personal fulfillment.
This scooter really moves out. It tops out at 20 mph on level ground, maybe faster than you really need. It is quite a rush to power down and let the brushless motor wind up to full revs. I told myself before I got it that I would pop on my helmet if I was going to go full speed, but I never wore it once. The M3 gives you lots of confidence, but keep in mind the small tires could catch on minor road irregularities easier than a bike.
The tires are solid (no flats) and grip better than you might think. I brought it to a 2014 E-bike demo event in Orange County on a rainy day and a bunch of people tried it out during the drier moments. The slick wet parking lot allowed for some exciting fun and sliding about. We drifted it through the corners and I pulled off a ton of classy donuts in front of the store. We splashed through the puddles and generally went kind of wild.
On the dry the tires grip fine. Plying smooth roads on the M3 is like a magic carpet ride, floating on air. As the pavement gets rougher you can feel the vibes and the real rough stuff does make you wish you had pneumatic tires under the deck. It has a front suspension, but this is no dirt bike. You can hear a little rattling from the front end on rough surfaces due to some minor slop in the steering pivot, yet it never caused me any concern.
Made from sturdy aluminum, on the whole I was very pleased with its rigidity. At 34 lbs, it is pretty hefty, but considering the power of the motor and the size of the lithium battery, it is a true lightweight. I tucked it in and out of the my trunk easily so many times and it balances nicely when you carry it folded. I’m not sure if the optional carry bag comes with a shoulder strap, if it does it would make for a better way to move it about when you are not riding.
Folding is so easy, push down the locking latch lever, release the main latch and the bars fold down flat. The two handlebar extensions fold down like periscope handles on a submarine. You can also collapse the upright bar about a foot for a smaller package. This part also allows you to adjust the EcoReco M3 for different height riders. The undercarriage is sealed and sleek, and it has a plastic bumper to protect it and the floor when you set it down folded. I was glad the see the fenders, and the kickstand was a treat to use. You just cruise to a stop, flip down the kickstand and the M3 stands at the ready for the next ride.
I took the M3 to several group bike rides and one of my E-bike presentations. Many, many riders took it for a spin and in each case it seemed a big smile was the main result. There was always much conversation about how it could make the shorter trips easy, and how much fun it is. Although one rider commented it was the scariest thing he had ridden all year, I noticed he was smiling the whole time and he took it for a longer ride than most. I even let a 7 or 8 year old girl ride it (check the video link below).
She and her sister approached me when they saw everyone else hopping aboard to ask if they could ride it too. After talking to their dad, and making sure he was right there, first the older sister took a spin and then she took to the throttle. They both took it easy and stayed close, but enjoyed it immensely, with a big smile of thanks for me after. I was a little apprehensive, but had ridden it enough to feel confident they would be ok.
The EcoReco M3 has a single brake lever that connects to the rear drum brake. It seemed plenty strong to me, yet a couple people mentioned it would be nice if it slowed the scooter quicker. The power control is very simple. A small lever at your right hand gives proportional control of the motor’s power. Very smooth action from the throttle results in the same from the motor. The safety programming of the scooter keeps the motor from coming on at a stop, it will only start when the scooter is moving.
Included is a nifty handlebar mounted display unit. Not only is it back lit, it reads out your speed and other things like a trip odometer. It also tells total miles ridden and battery cycles. The battery is good for over a 20 mile range, but hill climbing, heavy riders, higher speeds and lots of stops and starts will reduce it to maybe half that. Don’t expect it to climb grades like a high-end E-bike, yet it is way better than walking.
The M3 is touted as last-mile transportation. When I go downtown I try to always park in the available and free areas on the fringes and ride my bike the rest of the way. Perfect use for this electric scooter. When I take my electric bike on the local trolley it can be kind of tough getting it up the steps on the older ones. Once again, M3 to the rescue. Sometimes in my neighborhood I’ll walk, not with the EcoReco scooter, zip and I’m there. I rarely take my bike on the bus, but I hear they won’t take E-bikes, and if there are already two bikes on the front carrier you have to wait for the next bus. Not with the M3.
Then again the fun factor is huge. Trucking around with power, zigzagging about, feeling the rush of acceleration each time you pull the throttle, these are the thrills I experienced. The looks drawn as you pass don’t mean much to me, yet I could see many do a double-take as I motored by. That’s fun too.
So the story is that the EcoReco M3 covers both the serious tool and big fun arena. It has great features, a strong build, and appears to be good for the long haul. I don’t know much about Kickstarter, yet it appears that you can use it to save a bundle if you move quickly. And that’s just the way you’ll be moving on your new EcoReco M3.
I’ve been scooting, how about you? Turbo Bob.
“Cyclers see considerable more of this beautiful world than any other class of citizens. A good bicycle, well applied, will cure most ills this flesh is heir to.”—Dr. K. K. Doty.
EcoReco KickStarter site
EcoReco on Facebook
A couple videos I posted on the EcoReco M3 scooter