Offering some of the best bang for the buck you can get, it's easy to see why the Backfire G2 claimed the Best Buy Award. This board is solidly fast, holding its own with boards that cost hundreds of dollars more in our speed tests. It offers a comfortable ride, though it isn't necessarily the best for bumpy terrain and struggles a little with the steepest hills, but it is an overall fantastic option if you live somewhere flat with good pavement and are shopping on a budget.
Backfire G2 with G2T Motors Review
Pros: Great value, fast
Cons: Average range, so-so on steep hills
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Our Analysis and Test Results
This skateboard finished just behind the Boosted Mini X and ahead of the Boosted Mini S. It costs quite a bit less than both Boosted models and is a bit faster, but it can't match their performance when it comes to climbing steep hills. The range and ride are about the same for all three of these boards, but both Mini boards are slightly better at braking.
In our quest to find the best E-skateboard of them all, we conducted and an exhaustive amount of research, then bought all the most promising boards on the market today to compare head-to-head and find the true best of the best. We divided our testing process into six weighted testing categories, with the Backfire G2's results discussed in the next sections.
The most important aspect of our tests, accountable for 25% of the final score, dealt with how fast each board can go and how much acceleration it has. The Backfire is quite speedy, earning it an 8 out of 10.
This board did very well in our top speed drag race, putting down an average speed of 19.77 mph.
For this test, we measured out a set distance, then timed how long it took the board to cover it, allowing it plenty of runway to get up to maximum speed before it entered the course.
The second component of this metric focused on how much acceleration each board has. We did a similar procedure as our top speed test, though we started the clock with the board at a complete stop on the start line. The Backfire also did very well in this test, finishing the course in an average of 4.45 seconds — only slightly slower than the fastest time of 4.2 seconds.
Following our maximum speed and acceleration tests, we moved on to ranking and scoring the range of each electric skateboard and the time it takes to recharge completely. Together, these tests are responsible for 20% of the final score for each electric skateboard. The Backfire G2 isn't terribly impressive when it comes to range, but did alright, meriting a 5 out of 10
To test range, we rode the board around and around a giant flat parking area at moderate speed and measured how far it traveled before it died. The Backfire traveled 10.9 miles before calling it quits, though its effective range is a bit closer to 9.4 miles as it slowed down a bit for the last 1.5 miles or so.
However, it still was fast enough to be rideable, only dropping in speed to around 9 mph. Unfortunately, this board does take quite a bit of time to recharge — around 3.5 hours.
Next, we evaluated and scored the ride of each board, based on how comfortable it is to ride, how it handled rough or uneven terrain, and how much we were drawn to it overall. In total, these tests account for 20% of the final score for each skateboard as well. The Backfire G2 did decently well, earning a 6 out of 10.
The Backfire is a solid board with a touch of flex and the hint of a convex shape. It feels solidly comfortable to ride on — even for relatively longer distances — and we never felt our feet get any more fatigued than other boards. This board also has plenty of power if you hit small to medium cracks in the road to power through without stalling.
However, it can be quite jarring when crossing cracks. This board's stiffer flex makes it a bit of a struggle to ride over rough or uneven terrain — we definitely were ready to get off of it anytime we rode over a mile on cracked or bumpy pavement.
Despite this flaw, we were otherwise quite drawn to this skateboard. It's fun to ride and we wouldn't hesitate to grab it if we knew we were heading somewhere with reasonably nice roads.
For our next group of assessments, we ranked and scored how well each of these boards did at climbing hills, which is responsible for 15% of the total score for each board. We tried to ride up steeper and steeper hills with the Backfire, noting when it started to struggle and when it lacked the power to continue on to determine scores. It did well, meriting a 6 out of 10.
This skateboard easily zipped up the 5% and the 10% hills without any issues. We were pleasantly surprised that this board was able to make it up our 15% slope, granted at a slow speed and with some protest. We were also surprised that we were able to start up the 15% slope from a stopped position, which in our testing has been very uncommon for hub motor boards.
For our build metric, we rated and scored each skateboard on how responsive it was to the remote, the ergonomics of the remote, and how much it weighed, as well as how responsive the customer support is. The Backfire G2 did quite well, earning a 7 out of 10 in this group of evaluations, which account for 10% of its overall score.
This electric skateboard is about average in weight, registering in at 16.1 lbs. on our scale.
The remote is fairly ergonomic and comfortable to hold, but it doesn't seem as sturdily constructed as the controllers offered with the premium boards. It has two buttons and a slide switch to control the riding mode and direction of the board, as well as turn the board on and off. It uses the typical wheeled throttle to set the speed of the board.
The Backfire is quite responsive to remote commands, lacking any noticeable lag or delay, and has regenerative braking, so the battery will recharge when you are coasting or riding downhill.
It has a 6-month limited warranty and their customer service team seems helpful enough. They responded quickly to any inquiries that we had and were knowledgeable when it came to resolving a technical issue we asked them.
The last testing criterion that we looked at is how well each board stopped. To award points, we compared performance both when it came to stopping on flat ground at speed and at controlling your speed on the descent. This pair of tests are responsible for the remaining 10% of the Backfire's score and it did fairly well, finishing out our tests with a 6 out of 10.
This board averaged about 36' to come to a complete stop when traveling around 12 mph on flat ground, which is typical for these products.
This board also does surprisingly well at letting you manage your speed on descents. You can go quite slow with the brakes at their max, then let off and reapply them to control your speed. However, it doesn't quite have the stopping power to completely hold you in place on a 15% grade or slow you down too much if you start with high speeds at the top of the hill.
This board is an absolutely fantastic value, matching the performance of boards that cost double its price.
The Backfire G2 is our favorite board to recommend to anyone that wants to give electric skateboarding a try and is shopping on a tight budget. It does have its flaws, but it is an all-around great option for most people. However, we would recommend saving a bit more and getting a better board if you live in an area that is particularly hilly or has really rough streets.
— David Wise and Austin Palmer