The GOTRAX GLX Commuter is the clear choice for the Best Buy award as it performed like its higher-priced peers in most tests at a significantly lower price. The GLX has a smooth ride, climbs hills like a mule, stops on a dime and has some specialty features such as cruise control and a dual brake system actuated with a single hand lever. Given the savings, the restriction in travel radius and max speed can be overlooked.
GOTRAX GXL Commuter Review
Pros: Price, smooth ride, stopping power, cruise control
Cons: Relatively slow, shorter travel radius
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Our Analysis and Test Results
The GOTRAX GLX is a performance scooter with a price tag that will have you smiling. The best part of the deal is that very little is sacrificed for the savings. Yes, it's a bit slower than the other scooters, and it has a bit tighter travel radius. However, it climbs like a beast, it's fairly light and relatively easy to carry. It has a really smooth ride, and it has some useful add-ons such as cruise control, and a dual brake system operated with a single hand lever.
In our continued effort to find the best electric scooters - both in individual performance categories and overall - we run extensive side-by-side tests to push these machines to their limits so you know exactly what you're getting when you make a purchase. Our scooter analysis relies on five metrics that run the gamut of performance testing. These metrics are delineated below.
Our range tests are an assessment of two different but related capacities: travel radius and battery charging time. Travel radius is divided into two parts that we termed effective range and maximum range. Effective range is the maximum miles a scooter can traverse on level terrain at or near full speed. Conversely, the maximum range is an assessment of how far the scooter will go at any speed.
The GOTRAX GLX was an average performer in this category with an effective range of 10.1 and a maximum range of 10.9. However, a fully drained battery was fully charged in three hours and forty minutes, which was significantly faster than average.
Hill climbing competence and flat ground max speed are how we define power in an electric scooter. The hill tests were conducted on two slopes. The first averages a 3.5% grade and the second 10.5%. While the GOTRAX GLX was below average in the speed test, maxing out at ~13mph, it made quick work of the shallower hill climb and achieved elite status for cresting the ¼ mile 10.5% grade.
The ride metric is simply an assessment of the feeling a scooter has as it crosses rough patches in the road such as cracks, and potholes. This is a somewhat subjective metric, however, there is no doubt that the GOTRAX's cushy pneumatic tires smooth out the rattles and jarring impacts of the road. Accordingly, it earned high scores in this category.
The braking metric is an evaluation of a scooter's capacity to maintain a certain speed when descending a steep hill and the distance required to come to a complete stop when cruising at the maximum speed of flat ground. The GOTRAX sports a single hand-lever dual brake system (front electronic brake and rear disk brake), so it isn't surprising that it performed well in both tests. What is surprising is that in flat ground stopping tests it did as well as scooters with a fender brake; the most powerful brake we've tested.
Portability is king for the commuter because a scooter has to be folded, picked up, and stored when it isn't in use. Our portability analysis evaluates the specific features that make a scooter easy to portage. This assessment focuses on weight, folding efficiency, carrying latch design, carrying ease, and folded measurements.
The GOTRAX GLX Commuter doesn't fare so well in this category because it's slow to fold-up, has above average folded dimensions and the carrying handle diameter was a bit too large to be comfortable for prolonged gripping.
Value is essentially an assessment of the bang for the buck of a product, by this definition, the GLX is quite a value item. This product delivers high-end performance in many metrics while maintaining a middling price. As a result, this scooter claimed the Best Buy award.
While the GOTRAX GLX Commuter garners an average overall score, it has many of the characteristics of higher scoring contenders. It has a smooth ride, a powerful brake system, and some unique features like cruise control and a single lever dual brake system. With all these high-end qualities at an affordable price, we think that many consumers will overlook the shorter travel radius and slower max speed.
— Nick Miley and Austin Palmer