Updated September 20th, 2023
An affordable 48 volt electric scooter that accelerates fast and is a beast when it comes to climbing hills.
Best Overall – Best Electric Scooter Under $500
Best Value – Best Electric Scooter For Hills
The G5 is the latest electric scooter from Gotrax. It offers a new level of performance not seen for this price before. It has a 48 volt battery and 500 watt motor giving it sporty performance and lots of hill climbing grunt. It also has dual drum brakes with separate brake levers and LED ground effect lighting around the deck. If you want $800 worth of performance in a $500 electric scooter, stop looking and go get the Gotrax G5.
What is new for the Gotrax G5 vs the G4? Below is a list of the major differences.
- The G5 has an overall all new frame and construction.
- Added front suspension for the G5
- Dual front and rear wheel brakes with independent brake levers
- LED ground effect lights
- 48 volt 10.4 ah battery vs 36 volt 10.4 ah battery
- Upgraded from IPX4 (protection against splashes) to IP54 (protection against dust and splashes)
- The G5 is about 7 lbs heavier than the G4 (44 lbs vs 37 lbs)
- No built in cable lock on the G5
What we liked:
- Lots of go power. Great acceleration and hill climbing performance.
- Dual brakes give you more control when braking
- 3 speed levers for sporty performance, eco or walking
- Big comfortable deck for large adult sized feet
- Front suspension and 10 inch air tires for smooth ride
- Cool looking ground effect lights around the side
- Cruise control for easy riding
- Electronic combination lock
What we didn’t like:
- The display is difficult to read in bright day light
- The combination numbers to unlock the bike are too small on the display
- A bit heavy for carrying around
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- Top Speed – 20 mph
- Range – 24.8 miles
- Motor – 500 watt rear hub motor
- Battery – 48 volt 10.4 aH Lithium-ion
- Max Rider Weight – 220 lbs
- Scooter Weight – 44 lbs
- Wheels – 10 inch pneumatic tires
- Brakes – Front & rear drum brakes
Gotrax G5 Review and Test
We enjoy riding our Gotrax G4 a lot. It has a more performance feel than most other scooters in its price range. We were excited when we saw the Gotrax G5 announced with even more performance features. The G5 ups the game with a 48 volt battery and front suspension making it a true high performance machine. We ordered one as soon as we saw they were available so we could try it out.
1 – Features
500 watt motor
The G5 has a 500 watt motor located at the rear wheel. This is quite an upgrade over the standard 350 watt motor that comes in almost every other electric scooter in the $500-$600 price range. The G5 has acceleration and hill climbing that isn’t matched by anything else in its price range.
48 Volt 10.4ah battery
To feed it they give you a 48 volt 10.4 ah battery. This gives it a published top speed of up to 20mph and range up to 25 miles.
Dual front and rear drum brakes
The G5 has front and rear drum brakes. Both brakes have independent brake levers. The handlebar arrangement of the G5 is more like a bike with a brake lever for each hand. There is also an electronic brake built into the motor that activates with the brake levers.
Front shock absorber and 10 inch pneumatic wheels
The G5 has 10 inch pneumatic wheels which help it have a smooth ride. They went one step further and gave it a front shock absorber also to soak up cracks, potholes, and berms.
LED Lighting around the deck
In addition to a headlight and tail light, the G5 has LED ground effect lighting around the bottom of the deck. This helps the scooter look cool at night. It also lets cars and trucks see you easier from the side view.
The G5 has a built in electronic lock. To use the scooter you have to enter a 3 digit code when you power it up. It doesn’t stop someone from walking off with the scooter. It does stop them from being able to turn it on and use it.
1 – Power (9/10)
The G5 is the fastest feeling $500-$600 range scooter we have tried. It zooms up hills with heavy riders. It just feels fast all the time. When you hit the throttle it wants to go right now. It is exciting to ride and just plain fun. It offers acceleration you won’t find outside of $800-$1000 scooters. You would have to go up to a $900 Hiboy S2 Max or Segway F65 to get a similar motor and battery combo with any other scooter brand.
The G5 has a published top speed of 20mph. The fastest we were able to get it to go on smooth level pavement was 19.35mph. The display showed us going 20mph. This is close to the published speed.
We took the GoTrax G5 to our standard hill climbing test hill. This is a 0.5 mile long hill with a 100 feet of elevation change. It has 2 sections where the max grade is 10%. We use a 250 lb rider for the test. The Gotrax G5 took 2 minutes and 24 seconds to go up the hill with an average speed of 12.95mph. This is really good for an electric scooter.
This is the first $500-$600 electric scooter we’ve tested to climb the hill in under 3 minutes. The 350 watt 36 volt electric scooters will slow down to 5mph or less during the second 10% grade section. The G5 never dropped below 10mph anywhere on the hill.
2 – Range (8/10)
We took the scooter out to a bike path we use for checking the range. It is a long straight path with smooth pavement and only a few stops. We ride all the scooters as close to 15mph as we can for the ride. We use a 250 lb rider.
We typically get around 40-60% of the published range when doing this test. The published range for the Gotrax G5 is 25-30 miles which is the same number they publish for the G4. We got 12.45 miles out of the Gotrax G5. This was a little bit disappointing. We got 14.1 miles out of our G4. The G5 has a 500 watt battery compared to the 374 watt G4 battery. The G5 feels like riding a rocket and we love almost everything else about it. We wish it would go a little farther. We might get more range if we were a little more gentle on the throttle after each stop which we weren’t.
You can extend the range of an electric scooter by accelerating slower, going slower, making fewer stops and avoiding hills. The 25-30 mile published range is usually achieved by using a lightweight rider going 10mph or slower with no stops or hills.
For those who need a bit more range. Gotrax has introduced the G6 electric scooter. It is the same scooter but with a 15ah battery instead of 10.4 ah. It has a published 35-45 mile range instead of 25-35 mile for the G5.
3 – Ride Quality (9/10)
The old Gotrax G4 was one of the better riding $500 level scooters we have ridden. We expected good things from the G5 with its added front shock absorber and 10 inch air tires. We were not disappointed. The shock helped take the edge off of cracks and edges in the pavement giving as smooth as ride as you can get without having full suspension. The G5 felt in control riding over cracked and rough pavement at high speeds.
Overall this scooter is just a lot of fun to ride. It accelerates quickly, corners well at speed, and absorbs cracks and bumps in the pavement.
The G5 has a large deck that is big enough to easily fit adult sized feet on it. The deck is a full 7 inches wide by 18 inches long plus some extra next to the frame tube going forward.
4 – Braking (9.5)
The Gotrax G5 uses dual front and rear wheel drum brakes which gives you more control than the typical single cable pull disc brake. This lets you stop very quickly in full control. If you put your weight rearward and brake hard, the G5 will come to a screaching halt very quickly from full speed.
You can adjust the sensitivity of each brake lever by adjusting the cable at the drum brake. If you like really loose feeling levers you can have them. If you like sensitive brakes that start slowing as soon as you move the levers at all you can have that too. I personally prefer more sensitive brake levers that get into the brakes right away. I tightened both my brake cables until I got the feel I wanted.
5 – Controls (7.5/10)
The Gotrax G5 controls are easy to use and intuitive. Everything is controlled with 1 button under the LCD display. There is no iphone/Android app or settings menu to change anything.
The LCD display shows you speed along with battery remaining. There is 3 small icons to show you which speed mode it is in. There is one button for controlling everything. You can switch speed modes by single pressing the button and turn the light on and off by double pressing the button.
The display is easy to read in low light and flat light conditions. It’s really difficult to read in bright sunlight conditions. It makes entering the combination to unlock the scooter very difficult in bright light. This is a bit of a miss on the G5 and hopefully, they will correct it. This is my least favorite part about the G5.
3 gears or speed modes
The G5 has 3 gears for riding and walking.
- Sport mode – Top speed of 20mph
- Regular mode – Top speed of 15mph
- Walking mode – Top speed of 2mph.
This is a good split up in speeds. I like having a 15mph mode because that is just about the right top speed for riding bike paths and sidewalks with a lot of people walking, pets, and bikes. 20mph feels too fast and 10mph isn’t fast enough.
Walking mode is just about the right speed to match a quick walking speed. In walk mode, speed is still controlled by the throttle so you can go slower by only partially holding the throttle down. You still have to get the scooter rolling before the throttle will activate in walk mode.
You have to enter a 3 digit combination using the throttle lever and right brake lever to power up the scooter. Pushing throttle makes the number go up by 1. Squeezing the brake makes it go down by 1. Double press the power button after the correct code is entered to activate the scooter.
The numbers on the display are very small. The small numbers combined with the hard to read display in bright light makes the combination really hard to enter in bright sunlight. The Gotrax G4 had a similar combination code but the numbers were large and easy to read.
You can disable the electronic lock by pressing the power button 6 times in a row after powering up the scooter and entering the passcode. We leave ours disabled all the time because we rarely ever park it anywhere we are worried about theft. We use a cable lock when we do.
The throttle lever is on the left handlebar and is easy to control while gripping the bars. The tension feels just about right.
The G5 has thick beefy feeling handlebar grips. They feel like you’re grabbing onto something substantial. They are a good match for the overall performance feel of the scooter.
Headlight and Taillight
The G5 has a built in headlight and tail light. They can be turned on and off by double pushing the power button. The angle of the headlight can be adjusted for how far ahead you want to see. The lights are bright enough for cars to see you at night. They are adequate to ride with street lighting. If I was going to ride at night in a dark area I would supplement them with a good helmet light.
6 – Construction (9.5/10)
The Gotrax G5 has an aluminum frame with a plastic rear fender. It has a beefy and strong look to it. It just looks like it wants to go fast. The battery is mounted in the deck.
The G5 has a more polished look to it with a fender that wraps around the side of the frame. There are also plastic covers around the sides of the deck that cover up the frame welding in the front. It gives the scooter a polished finished look to it. It also comes in a grey finish instead of the usual black or white from Gotrax. It just looks really sharp.
Gotrax has one of the better folding mechanisms and they carried it over into the G5. The folding lock has twin latches in it. One that latches when you fold the lever halfway up and a second latch that has a safety lock on it to lock the steering tube in place.
A small latch on the handlebar latches to the rear fender. This latch is far away from the handlebar centerline. It’s far enough off that the scooter just barely balances on the kickstand. My small Garmin GPS attached to the other side of the handlebar was enough weight to make the scooter tip over when sitting with the handlebar folded. The latch needs to be closer to the handlebar center.
7 – Assembly
Very little assembly is required for the Gotrax G5. The only thing you have to do is connect one electric connection, slide the handlebar on, then tighten 4 bolts (using the included wrench) to hold the handlebar in place. The manual mentions attaching the brake cables to the brake levers. That was already done on our scooter.
8 – Portability
The Gotrax G5 gained a few pounds from the G4. This is the price you pay for more power. The weight went from 37 lbs up to 44 lbs. The G5 is at the upper limit for something that I would want to carry around anywhere. It’s not a light easy to carry scooter around scooter.
8 – Charging
The G5 takes from 4 to 6 hours to recharge with the included charger. The charger has red and green lights to indicate when it is charging and when it’s full. The charge port is on the side of the deck.
Recommendation – Buy or No Buy?
The Gotrax G5 is a strong buy. It simply has better power and performance than anything else in its price range. If you want a fast, fun scooter with strong hill climbing ability, you should take a look at the Gotrax G5.
See our guide to the best $500 electric scooters to learn about other good options.
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Co-Founder & Chief Editor
I grew up back east in Pennsylvania and learned to ski on a family trip to Killington, Vermont when I was 6. I immediately fell in love with the mountains and outdoors and have been skiing across the US and Canada ever since. I went to school for Mechanical Engineering, and have a Master’s Degree in Material Science and Reliability.
I am a total gear nerd and love learning how things work and thinking about how they could be improved. Nothing excites me more than trying out new gear. I’d rather spend 3 hours taking my bike apart and learning how to change something than go to a bike shop. These days I reside in Michigan by the Great Lakes and go skiing, biking, and boating as much as possible.