With the increasing popularity of skateboarding among Nigerian youths and their hunger for new technology, electric skateboards might become a popular sight soon in major cities across the country.
Green technology, electric motors, save-the-earth initiatives… It seems the world has tilted towards the abolition of fuel-driven mobility. As for the mercurial-minded Generation Y, ride-able mobility is on the upswing. Speaking of which, according to a 2017 CNN report, the first skateboarding crew in Nigeria emerged just last year.
However, anyone who frequented the National Stadium in Surulere as far back as 2012 and even earlier might doubt the veracity of that CNN report. At best, there were no formal or popular crews but lots of skateboarding teams. A difference in nomenclature perhaps.
The point is, with the increasing popularity of the sport among Nigerian youths and their hunger for new technology, electric skateboards might become a popular sight on the streets. Actually, some local e-commerce sites are already advertising these boards for sale.
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What on Earth are Electric Skateboards?
It is not just another skateboard with an electric motor attached for its movement. That’s the skinny but there is more to it than that. Think of zipping along the streets on a quiet Sunday evening when the weather is clement. No exhaust fumes or noisy engine, just the sound of wind whipping past your ears.
Electric skateboards are fitted with lithium-ion batteries that are rechargeable and long-lasting. For DIY aficionados, adding multiple cells into a single battery pack when constructing a board, provides a mouthwatering combo of power boost, longevity, speed and uphill thrust.
Essentially, it is a skateboard powered by an electric motor that can carry its user for a specific distance based on the duration for which its battery can last.
Imagine the power produced by those electric motors to carry an average-sized person uphill without losing too much battery juice. Add to that the remote control with which you can start, control movement and stop the skateboard. Skateboarders are enjoying an exhilarating experience.
Where the Rubber Meets the Road
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Having gotten the bare bones of electric skateboards, what are the available ones really offering? Perhaps it is best to focus on the least expensive ones at this time. Why? There are a number of pricey e-skateboards out there, ranging between $1,000 to $1,700.
In this economy, doing the math on those figures might be scary. Luckily, whenever technology becomes readily available, alternatives typically abound. Bearing trade-offs in mind, here are two of the best budget electric skateboards.
BLITZART Huracane Electric Skateboard
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Powered by a 36V Lithium-Ion battery which generates 350W of power, this skateboard is able to travel at 27km/hr, covering a distance of just over 16km on a full charge while carrying a payload (weight) of 136kg. Its 38-inch deck is constructed primarily from maple wood which guarantees durability.
For just under $300, this is quite a steal when considering the distance you can cover without having to stop at a fuel station. The only downside is that it is not an off-road vehicle so users must stay on flat and dry surfaces. Also, the battery charge time is 2.5 hours.
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Touted as the world’s lightest electric skateboard, this skateboard retains many features sported by its up-scale counterparts. The manufacturer is also renowned for outdoor sports mobility gear such as these. Indeed, its lightweight construction makes it attractive to the youth and teenage market segment.
The 450W motor produces a speed of 16km/hr while covering a distance of just 8km. This is comparatively less than the previous skateboard but recall, it is designed primarily for youths and fun rather than sports. Constructed from maple wood, its durability is assured even with its 82km payload.
For these features and more, this skateboard will set you back just $200. well worth it… except of course, you prefer fossil-fuel sports mobility.
These are just two of the budget electric skateboards out there. Expect more in subsequent reviews.