Swagtron is an established brand in the world of personal electric transportation. They were the one of the first companies that went through the trouble of making an explosion-proof hoverboard, and since then they have been putting their tech savvy to different devices, like electric skateboards, scooters and very popular folding electric bikes. Their line of products includes everything, from fun gadgets for kids, to robust and solid commuting electric scooters.
Swagtron Scooters – Commuting on a Budget
Swagger Elite is not the new scooter. And unlike many other electric transportation devices that have just come and gone, this scooter was able to stand the test of time. Despite the fact that it originally came out in 2018, this scooter is still in demand and still sold all over the world. This means that you can find lots of experiences and reviews online, as well as lots of YouTube videos on how to address any issues that might come up.
After the Swagger 5, Swagtron has released a new flagship scooter, Swagger 7, but the new model did not replace the very popular number 5. Main reason is that Swagger 7 is almost twice the price of the 5, and there are not many swift and solid commuter scooters for around $300.
Design and Build
Build quality of Swagger 5 is solid. The rubberized deck is 17.4” by 6”, which is on the smaller side, but it still provides enough room for standing. Aluminium alloy frame keeps the scooter lightweight, but it is sturdy enough and does not feel flimsy at all.
A nice LED display shows the battery level, current speed and Bluetooth status. For more, there is a smartphone app, but more on it later. There is a single button just under the display to power the scooter on, control speed mode and turn the lights on.
Considering that this is one of the least expensive electric scooters, it’s expected that some parts feel and look cheap. For example, the brake lever feels plastic-y, the cover for the charging port will fall off very soon,
A big weak point of this scooter is the fact that it does not have any suspension. Pneumatic tires do a good job compensating the lack of springs, and to be honest, this is not an off-road scooter, it is designed for flat paved roads only.
The Swagger 5 features a front 250W hub motor. This is pretty much the standard for entry-level lightweight urban electric scooters. The motor is relatively quiet compared to some other scooters.
Swagger 5 has the zero-start option, meaning you can get it moving only by pressing the throttle, but if you want to preserve the motor you should start by kicking off with one foot until you reach a certain speed, and then the automatic acceleration will take on. You can also engage the cruise control for consistency. This puts less stress on the motor, adding to its longevity.
Battery and Charging
This scooter features 36V, 216 watt-hour lithium-ion battery pack. The charger comes with an integrated battery indicator that lights up red when charging and changes to green when the scooter is fully charged. Charging time is about 3.5 hours, which is excellent. All Swagtron electric devices feature Sentry Shield technology, which offers multiple layers of battery protection and safety.
How Fast Can Swagtron Swagger Go?
The advertised top speed of Swagger 5 is 18mph, but you should have in mind that this is the speed achieved while testing in the ideal conditions and with a 165lbs rider on board. The top speed that you can get in reality is about 15-16 mph, which is enough for you to get where you need to be fairly quickly.
Of course, top speed depends on the terrain, so you can even get to 20 mph when you go downhill, but on an incline, you will be able to go no faster than 9-10mph. Also, as the battery charge is getting lower, the top speed will decrease as well.
Cruise control and speed modes
There are three speed modes to choose from, first one is for maximum battery savings, third one is for maximum speed, and the second one is the happy medium. You will get riding experience if you switch between modes. Cruise controls engages automatically, you can turn it on via the smartphone app or holding the throttle for 5 seconds maintaining the speed you want to cruise at.
When it comes to something that depends on so many different factors, like range of the scooter, real-life tests are the only thing that then show you the real data. Swagtron used to have a reputation for overestimating their electric scooters’ range, so we had to put this one to the test.
The advertised range of Swagger 5 is 6-11 miles, which is about right. If you ride it sensibly, not hitting the top speed all the time, you can expect to get to the 9 miles, providing you are an average weight adult. The more you weigh, and the more inclines you come across on you trip, the distance you will be able to go on a full charge will be shorter.
This scooter generally handles the hills well, as long as the inclines are small to moderate. This is a single hub motor scooter after all, it would be a bit unreasonable to expect it to go over mountains.
Swagger 5 comes with front electronic brake and rear disc brake. Good old mechanic disc brake on the rear wheel adds a level of safety that many electric scooters at this price point, having only electric brakes, do not have. You will probably have to adjust the disc brake right out of the box, and adjust them again every once in a while, just like you would do it on your bicycle. When braking, the taillight will turn on.
Sometimes you have to stop quickly, but brake cautiously. It’s never a good idea to slam on the brake lever. To slow down, gradually ease off the throttle and apply pressure to the brake.
Wheels and Tires
The front tire is an 8.5 inch pneumatic one, while the rear one is a rubber tire with internal polyurethane honeycomb structure. The tires are decent quality and provide enough traction on most surfaces.
The pneumatic tires are excellent for damping the ride over bumps and cracks, but sooner or later you will have to go through the nightmare of changing a tire. To prevent this, we recommend that you replace the air-filled front tire with some kind of non-pneumatic ones. Honeycomb tires have less resistance than a solid rubber tire, but provide more cushioning and they are still more resistant than a pneumatic tire.
The folding mechanism is fool-proof: there is an easy-to-use latch, you just collapse it. The scooter itself weighs 26 lbs, which is not too heavy. The scooter folds down to around 42″ x 17″ x 19″, and when it’s folded it’s very compact and portable, and the only thing that could make it better are the folding handlebars.
If you are a bit heavier, maximum weight limit plays an important role in the deciding which e-scooter to buy. Swagtron claims that the Swagger 5 can support a max load of 320 pounds, which is a hundred pounds more than most of the electric scooters, like the Xiaomi M365. While this sound amazing in theory, the real-life experience shows that, while this scooter can certainly haul around a 300lbs rider, it would just be too slow. If you need something that you actually ride, check out our selection of electric scooters for heavy adults.
Swagtron 5 comes with some fantastic additions, which is an excellent deal, considering the price. There is a kickstand mounted out of the box and a practical bell. You will also get a water bottle holed and a phone mount, which are all the things that you really need, and won’t have to buy later.
Another almost necessary feature, that many e-scooters do not have, are the lights. There is a decently bright headlight mounted high on the stem and rear fender brake light. This will help you see and be seen after the sun comes down, but for serious night rides, we recommend additional lighting to improve your safety.
Swagtron has released an iOS and Android app that pairs with the Swagger 5 and allows you to activate cruise control, select your speed, plan your route with GPS, control the headlight, and more. You can pair your smartphone with the scooter via Bluetooth and use the include smartphone mount to turn your phone into a real-time dashboard. The app also adds a theft-deterrent lock and alarm mode.
How Does Swagtron Scooter Compare to Others?
Swagtron 5 vs Xiaomi M365
It’s no secret that the Swagtron Swagger 5 is pretty much a rebranded version of Xiaomi M365. While it is hard to look past the similarities, the two very popular scooters are not quite the same. Quality-wise they are neck-a-neck, folding mechanism is the same, but the reason that Xiaomi cost much more is the battery capacity and the range of 18 miles, as opposed to anywhere between 6-10 miles on the Swagger 5. If you want to know more, read our full review of the Xiaomi M365.
Swagtron 5 vs GOTRAX Xr
These two are in the same price range, and for us, there is no clear winner between the two. Each one comes with some unique advantages, for example, Gotrax has a better range, while Swagger provides more torque, better acceleration and better hill climbing ability.
Gotrax has both pneumatic tires, so the ride is a bit more comfortable, though neither of the two is made to go over rough terrain. Gotrax XR does not come with an app, but it does have a cruise control. Speaking of the portability, Gotrax XR folds so the handlebar stem is parallel to the deck, which makes it a bit easier to carry.
Swagtron 5 vs Razor E300
Razor E300 is probably one of the first “mainstream” electric scooters and definitely one of the most popular ones. While we love everything Razor e300 has to offer, as you can read in our review, more modern scooters, ones with lithium battery are stealing the show. Swagger 5 is better than Razor e300 in almost every aspect; it’s faster, has better range, it’s light, portable, has more additional features. But those who love tinkering with their electric scooter will appreciate the simplicity of the design and the possibility for modification of Razor E300. But if you want a scooter to assemble, ride and don’t think about it, Swagger 5 is a better option.