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Best Electric Mini and Balance Bikes for Kids

Electric balance bikes are a fantastic way to get young riders on two wheels. The ease of getting in motion with just a twist of the wrist can be very empowering. No clutch, no engine noise, and no heat; just a simple twist-and-go approach. As the little riders’ skills and balance improve they can use the throttle, increase the power, and eventually move up to minibikes, then gas-powered bikes, and then to the infinite possibilities grown riders enjoy.

The number of electric balance bikes on the market is growing, with one of the most prominent recent offerings coming from Kawasaki. There are also many notable Amazon finds and an abundance of choices available from the electric stability bike superstars at Stacyc. Minibike versions of bigger motorcycles are also available from Indian Motorcycle and Oset to really get children moto-vated to ride larger two-wheeled machines when they grow up. These little bikes are going to make you wish you were a kid again.

Hiboy BK1

Positive reviews and a low price tag make the Hiboy BK1 balance bike worth a look.

Positive reviews and a low price tag make the Hiboy BK1 balance bike worth a look. (Hiboy/)

The Hiboy BK1 is a sleek electric balance bike with a hub-integrated 100-watt motor. Weighing in at a claimed 17.6 pounds with a 34.7-inch wheelbase, the BK1 can easily be handled by a kid between ages 3 and 5. There’s push-button start for easy and intentional startups. In order for the motor to kick on, the bike must be in motion; then it will go up to a mild-mannered 9 mph. A single brake lever triggers the front V-brake and the rear e-brake simultaneously for controlled stopping. Reviews on the Hiboy site and Amazon are positive overall, with some commenting that it is reliable and easy to operate and charge. With a price of around $300, the Hiboy BK1 is the least expensive on the list. Plus, it can be ordered through Amazon.

Hiboy BK1 Price: $300 (black)/$316 (white)

Indian eFTR Mini and eFTR Jr.

Kids 8 years old and up can enjoy letting the rear tire cut loose. Do they make steel shoes in youth sizes?

Kids 8 years old and up can enjoy letting the rear tire cut loose. Do they make steel shoes in youth sizes? (Indian Motorcycle/)

The eFTR Mini and eFTR Jr take flat-track design cues from the V-twin-powered FTR750, but are fully electric and geared toward kids. Since the eFTR’s introduction last year, the rally for Indian-loyal riders of all ages is stronger than ever. In addition to the Jr version, Indian is luring in smaller riders with the eFTR Mini and teens/young adults with the eFTR Hooligan 1.2 ebike. The Mini and Jr are intended for riders 8 and up; the difference between the two is that the Mini is smaller (18.4-inch seat height versus 23.2) and has a weight capacity of 140 pounds (versus 175 on the Jr). Both bikes have two ride modes, high and low. The manuals claim the eFTR Mini has a run time of up to 30 minutes and the FTR Jr up to 65 minutes. Considering how good these bikes look, the prices are very reasonable.

Indian eFTR Mini Price: $514.99

Indian eFTR Jr Price: $824.99

Kawasaki Elektrode

The Elektrode is an all-new offering from Kawasaki.

The Elektrode is an all-new offering from Kawasaki. (Kawasaki/)

The Kawasaki Elektrode, the newest addition to the electric balance bike scene, is suitable for kids 3 to 8 years old. Like the Stacyc bikes listed below, it has three speed modes that help control power. These power levels are a great way for kids to develop riding skills one step at a time. An auto-sleep feature turns off the bike after 10 minutes of inactivity, a nice feature considering kids’ attention spans. Its compact 32.8-inch wheelbase makes it easy to transport. It has an impressive claimed 2.5 hours of run time and takes the same amount of time to recharge. For more information, read our First Look.

Kawasaki Elektrode Price: $1,099

Oset 12.5 Racing, 16.0 Racing, and 20.0 Racing

The Oset delivers a different mode of two-wheeled entertainment. Kids can have fun maneuvering over rocks and logs in the backyard and the quiet electric bike won’t disturb the neighbors.

The Oset delivers a different mode of two-wheeled entertainment. Kids can have fun maneuvering over rocks and logs in the backyard and the quiet electric bike won’t disturb the neighbors. (Oset/)

Oset, which was recently acquired by Triumph Motorcycles, continues to entice new riders to the sport in e-trials bike form. A trials bike is designed to tackle obstacles such as logs and boulders, and what better way to learn throttle modulation than with a simple twist-and-go electric platform? The Oset 12.5 Racing bike is for newbie trials riders (ages 3–5) whereas the 16.0 Racing adds more power for competitive riders (ages 5–7). The 20.0 model (appropriate for ages 8-plus) ups the ante even more with a 1,200-watt motor and larger dimensions. The kid can bound around the backyard without disturbing the neighbors with noise, or at least noise coming from a bike engine. A magnetic lanyard, padded chin guard, and two dials for adjusting speed and response are among the safety features on the 12.5 model. The magnetic lanyard is carried over to the other Osets, but the larger models have an additional dial to adjust power. All models have an approximate run time of 1 to 2 hours.

Oset 12.5 Racing Price: $1,699

Oset 16.0 Racing Price: $2,399

Oset 20.0 Racing Price: $3,099

Stacyc 12eDrive, 16eDrive Brushless, 18eDrive Launch Edition, and 20eDrive Launch Edition

Whether your kid is 3 or 12, there’s a Stacyc suitable for them.

Whether your kid is 3 or 12, there’s a Stacyc suitable for them. (Nik Wogen/)

What began as a father-son project exploded into a successful business that introduced 100,000 young kids to riding in a matter of a few years. Stacyc offers multiple models for a variety of ages, from the Stacyc 12eDrive ($799) for 3–5 year-olds to the 20eDrive ($3,100) for 10–12 year-olds. Sister brand Cycle World tested the 16eDrive and found that rider skills improve quickly aboard the Stacyc—big smiles and thumbs-up from the test rider. Light and maneuverable equates to confident handling, and these bikes are certainly lightweight; the largest 20eDrive weighs at a claimed 33 pounds with battery. Run time is about 30 to 60 minutes for the variety of models, so an extra battery may be needed if the kid loves covering a lot of terrain.

Stacyc 12eDrive Price: $799

Stacyc 16eDrive Brushless Price: $1,049

Stacyc 18eDrive Launch Edition Price: $2,650

Stacyc 20eDrive Launch Edition Price: $3,100

Viro Rides Café Racer

With looks like these, all the kids on the block will be jealous.

With looks like these, all the kids on the block will be jealous. (Viro Rides/)

Another Amazon standout is the Café Racer minibike from Viro Rides. This bike weighs a claimed 42 pounds and is equipped with a 250-watt motor that can go up to 15 mph, making it best for older children or young teens. From the fork gaiters to the “gas tank” and flat stitched seat, it has a legit-looking mini cafe racer profile. LED lighting on both the headlight and taillight which modernizes the style while improving visibility. A round instrument panel on the top of the tank displays speed and battery life. The battery lasts up to 40 minutes. Reviews highlight its easy assembly and its good looks, but it can be underpowered for some.

Viro Rides Café Racer Price: $498

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