The best e-mobility solutions to travel across London have been revealed in the inaugural Move Electric e-Race across London, which saw six e-mobility vehicles ranging from a £86,235 Porsche Taycan to a rental e-scooter take and including - yep! you've guessed it, an Eskuta SX-250 e-bike -on an 18-mile journey across the city.
Despite its 280kW motor and 143mph top speed, the Porsche Taycan was beaten to the finish line by the Super Soco TC Max electric motorbike.
The contest resulted in a convincing victory for the Super Soco TC Max, ridden by Move Electric sister title What Car?’s road tester Neil Winn, which completed the journey from Move Electric Headquarters in Twickenham to the Olympic Park in Stratford in exactly 1hr 20mins. That was ten minutes quicker than the runner-up, a Porsche Taycan which costs £68,351 more than the TC Max.
While competitors were free to choose their own route, the start in Twickenham and finish in Stratford were selected to create an 18-mile challenge through London that would offer a mix of roads and routes, providing a challenge for all six forms of transport. Heavy showers and traffic added to the challenge – and, of course, competitors had to follow all the rules of the road. The full video of the race is available here.
The Porsche which took the north circular avoiding central London only narrowly beat the two pedal-assist electric bikes taking part in the race. Our very own SX-250 finished in third, just six minutes behind the Porsche.
Our Eskuta rider for the race, Atlanta thinks she could have easily made up those six mins had she been more familiar with riding in London and the cycle paths. Never the less Atlanta finished in 3rd place with a time of 1hr 36mins.
The Gocycle G4, a folding e-bike created by a former McLaren engineer, finished the route in 1hr 43mins despite its rider, Move Electric’s e-bike expert Rebecca Bland, having to complete the bulk of the route without electric assist. It was later determined a safety feature on the demonstrator model resulted in the motor shutting down.*
The Citroën Ami quadricycle was the fifth and final vehicle to complete the course, clocking in at 1hr 54mins. Due to the Ami’s 28-mile top speed, it was unable to follow the Taycan on the North Circular leaving its driver, Autocar associate editor Piers Ward, frustrated by central London traffic.
The only machine that failed to finish the race was a rental electric scooter, ridden by Move Electric staff writer Sam Phillips. At present, the only e-scooters that are legally allowed on the roads of the UK are those that are part of government-approved rental schemes, and they are limited to 15.5mph – although this is lowered for safety in some areas.
Not every borough of London is part of the Transport for London e-scooter trial scheme, and as Stratford is not part of the service, the machine was unable to reach the finish line. The e-scooter’s inability to finish the race highlights the current inconsistency surrounding the laws on the technology.
James Attwood, Move Electric editor, said: “With an increasingly diverse range of electric vehicles for people living in urban areas, we decided to put them to the test. It wasn’t a surprise to see the Super Soco TC Max electricmotorbike lead the way, and what impressed everyone was how close the Eskuta SX-250and Gocycle G4 e-bikes were. Both Atlanta and Rebecca reckoned they could go quickernow they know the route – especially with the technical issue for the G4. If we staged the race again, we think they could well have beaten the Taycan and given the TC Max a run for its money.
“The Ami might not have matched the other finishers for pace but this was in part a reflection of London traffic – had the Taycan taken the same route it couldn’t have gone any quicker!
“Rental e-scooters can be an effective form of transport for short journeys in urban areas,but clearly aren’t intended to be used for 18-mile trips. What our race did show is that it can be confusing that they only work in certain council areas. Hopefully the government’s forthcoming plans to legalise e-scooters will enable more people to safely make use of a promising new form of transport.”