In the market for a personal transportation device but don’t want to pay the high price tag? Segway is by far the top name in personal transporters, but they can be quite expensive for the average user.
Fortunately, there are some valuable alternatives on the market that cost a fraction of the price.
We’ve put together a buyer’s guide so you can compare the less expensive models to Segway’s standards. Check out our full guide to finding the best alternative.
The Segway i2 SE will cost you about $6,000. For the all-terrain x2 SE model, you can expect to pay about $6,500. But, the Airwheel A3, the Airwheel S3, and the InMotion MoGo are notable options that will cost you less than half the price.
Listed at $1,499 and $1,399 respectively, the Airwheel A3 and Airwheel S3 offer many features that are like a Segway. The InMotion MoGo, listed at $2,495, has features that rival the most popular PT designs.
The Segway i2 SE and x2 SE top at around 12.5 mph. These models include roll compensation, beginner settings, and dismount features. They are also designed with LeanSteer technology for easy steering and easy maneuverability.
On both the Airwheel A3 and S3 models, you can reach 11 mph at top speed. If you’re planning on riding on paved surfaces, you’ll barely notice the 1.5 mph difference in speed ability.
The Airwheel A3 can handle inclines up to 15 degrees, while the Airwheel S3 is perfect for indoor and outdoor use. The A3 includes an electronic brake system and hydraulic shock absorbers that make it perfect for use in urban settings and rugged roads. The S3 boasts an intelligent balancing system and includes tilting protection.
On a full charge, you can ride up to 24 miles indoors or outdoors on the Segway i2 SE. On the x2 SE, designed for off-road terrain, you can expect about 12 miles of range on a single charge. In comparison, the InMotion MoGo will let you ride about 18 miles on a full charge.
Keep in mind, the weight of the rider and environmental terrain will impact how much range you can enjoy. Before you buy any personal transporter, think about where you’re going to use it.
Depending on where you’re planning to ride, lighting options can be important. The Segway PT includes front and rear running lights as well as balance indicator lights.
The Airwheel A3 has two rear turn lights and an LED brake light. The S3 boasts two stoplights, two headlights, and two-atmosphere lights. The InMotion MoGo includes front and tail lights, turn signals, and brake lights.
Consider the lighting on any personal transporter before you buy. If you’re planning to ride outdoors, proper lighting is essential. If you intend to ride around a business campus, you may be able to get away with fewer indicator lights.
The LCD panel on the Airwheel A3 includes a battery indicator, odometer, speed gauge, and headlight. It also has a mobile app that allows you to set your anti-theft alarm and check functions and controls.
The S3 offers similar features with speed, distance, battery life, and temperature displays. The InMotion MoGo, once synced to the app, will show your operational state, speed, mileage, and battery life.
Battery quality is a key factor when buying any personal transporter. A lithium-ion Segway PT battery can take up to eight hours to recharge from empty. Once completely charged, you can expect to enjoy a 24-mile range.
Airwheel models include Japanese lithium-ion batteries that provide 3.8 times the life expectancy of other batteries.
The Airwheel A3 battery features a lifespan of approximately 5 years. With a charging time of only 3 hours, the A3 battery is one of the best in its class.
The InMotion MoGo battery pack can recharge about 500 times and takes about 3.5 hours to recharge completely. The Airwheel S3 battery typically lasts 2 years.
The Segway x2 SE features deep tread tires that can handle off-roading, including sand. If you’re planning on taking your PT on various terrains, you’ll need all-terrain tires.
To get the most out of any PT, look for one that has an indoor and outdoor capability.
Where to Begin Looking
The InMotion MoGo, Airwheel A3, and Airwheel S3 aren’t the only PTs giving Segway a run for their money. The Fortech mini, the Freefeet Chegway, and the Robin M1 Robstep are other popular alternatives worth considering.
Before you decide which PT is right for you, do your research. Think about what you are going to use it for. Think about what you need it to do for you. Are you willing to pay a premium for a Segway board, or are you comfortable with exploring other popular hoverboards?
At $6,000 or more, these modes of transportation are a splurge for most consumers. There are some viable alternatives on the market that cost a fraction of the price. If you have your heart set on the Segway brand, there’s always the Segway miniPro to consider.
Before you drop $1,500 or more on any self-balancing scooter, think about where and when you’re going to use it.
Once you can pinpoint what your main use for a PT device, you’ll be able to sort through all the available features. The key to buying the right PT is finding the one that offers exactly what you need.