Hiboy Ecom 14 Review: A Fun, Affordable Commuter Scooter
Jun 25, 2023
The Hiboy Ecom 14 is an affordable sit-on scooter with a built-in basket, perfect for commuting or running errands.
Scooters are great, but standing for a 20-mile commute isn’t for everyone. Sit-on scooters feel entirely different from standing models; they're more like a proper “vehicle.” The Hiboy Ecom 14 is a relatively affordable electric scooter that can switch between sitting and standing modes, but the emphasis is definitely on sitting while you ride.
With larger wheels to soak up bumps, a 30-mile range, and even a built-in basket for cargo, the Ecom 14 seems like a perfect commuter, and as long as you can overlook a few minor issues, it absolutely is.
The Hiboy Ecom 14 is a sit-on electric scooter with a 31-mile range, a max speed of 22MPH, and a built-in basket. Perfect for commuting or trips to the grocery store, it can even handle minor off-road excursions on city paths.
Hiboy designed the Ecom 14 in a semi-modular fashion. While the company markets the scooter as a sit-in model, you can also remove the seat to use it more like a standing scooter. This isn’t perfect, though. Removing the seat from the stand is easy enough, but removing the stand includes removing several bolts on the main platform of the scooter.
Many scooters meant for commuting and errands feature 8.5-inch to 10-inch wheels. Hiboy has gone quite a bit bigger with the 14-inch wheels on the Ecom 14. The platform is also wider than many stand-on scooters, giving you a more stable feel when riding seated.
While many scooters don’t offer much in the way of adjustability, the Hiboy has a decent amount. The seat is adjustable, though you can only set it to a handful of pre-drilled holes in the seat post, so you have to pick the one that feels closest to what you like. On the other hand, the handlebar height is adjustable via a quick-release clamp on the front of the scooter, making it easy to make minor changes.
All the cables coming from the handlebars are routed through a single cable wrap that extends from the handlebars down to the scooter's base. There is a clamp on the main column of the scooter to attach this, but I couldn’t find a way to get the cable secured in a way I was happy with. It held, but the cable always looked awkward. Admittedly, you could quickly remedy this with a few velcro straps or a similar solution.
The Ecom 14 features a basket that attaches to the back for carrying cargo that you can fold down to keep out of the way. Once folded down, a single latch keeps the basket spring-loaded, ready to snap open the moment you release it. Be careful when you do this, as the basket springs open with a force that could hurt your fingers if they’re in the way.
The scooter features a 48V, 10Ah battery, which makes for a maximum speed of 22MPH (35km/h) on the highest speed setting. Considering the extra weight from the seat and wider body, this isn’t bad at all. The maximum range is 31 miles.
The maximum weight limit for the Ecom 14 is 220lbs (100kg), including the rider and any cargo they may be carrying. The good news is that if you’re carrying a heavier load than that, you won’t have to worry about crawling along at half speed. Running over the weight limit reduces the range, so you may not make it as far, but you won’t stall out climbing a small hill.
Once the battery is drained, plug the included charger into the port on the scooter, located on the base of the scooter on the left side. A rubber port cover protects it, but you need to be careful to reattach this after charging.
Like many scooters, the front column of the Ecom 14 folds down for easier portability. The issue is that, because of the seat on this model, it doesn’t fold down particularly far, nor does it attach to anything to keep it from moving. You can remove the seat for a little more room, but even this doesn’t add much.
On top of the limited ability to break down the scooter into an easier-to-move package, it’s also fairly heavy. The weight combined with the more awkward size of the Ecom 14 means that moving it up and down stairs will not be easy. If you’re using the scooter frequently, you should try to keep it as close to the ground floor as possible.
Combined with the 14-inch wheels, the wider base of the Ecom 14 feels more stable than your typical stand-up scooter. This is nice for overall comfort, but it may give you a false sense of security, so make sure to stay alert and keep your hands on or near the brakes.
Speaking of brakes, this model features front and rear brakes, unlike some more affordable models that rely on only a rear brake combined with the regenerative braking from the motor. You get a rear disc brake and a drum brake on the front wheel. Be sure to adjust these before you take the scooter for a ride, as the brakes were fairly loose out of the box with my review unit.
The scooter features a headlight, but it’s mounted in an odd spot. Many scooters mount the headlight higher up, near the handlebars. Here, it’s mounted lower, which can limit visibility. The light is also mounted on the part of the front column that doesn’t move, so the light doesn’t always follow exactly where you’re looking.
The Ecom 14 is also equipped with a rear brake light. This lights up when you pull either brake lever and turns on regardless of whether you have the headlight enabled. You’ll also find a bell mounted on the left-hand side of the handlebars to alert anyone around you that you’re coming up on them.
The controls are laid out exactly as you’d expect, with the throttle and display on the left side and the bell on the left. The rear brake level is on the left, while the front brake level is on the right. If you’re used to riding bicycles, this may put the brakes opposite of how you’re used to, so be careful when you first start riding.
The display is a simple affair, with three buttons to control everything. This lets you switch the display between km/h and MPH, check the battery level, switch between the three built-in speed modes, and a mode that cuts the throttle entirely.
The lowest speed mode goes to a maximum of 9MPH, which is nice for sidewalks or maneuvering the scooter around. The second speed mode kicks the maximum speed up to 19MPH, while the maximum speed tops out at 22MPH.
I didn’t actually get much of a chance to use the display, as mine was broken out of the box. The backlight lit up, so I could see that the scooter was turned on, but I had to intuit which speed mode I was in simply by feeling which one was faster.
This meant that seeing the maximum speed I was hitting was impossible. Still, I could tell when I was going over the speed of the limiter. When going downhill, for example, the throttle would stop working until the scooter fell below the maximum speed.
Still, it’s good to know that if something happens to your display, you can use the scooter without being able to see it. That said, you’d probably want to attach a phone mount, so you can use your phone to gauge your speed.
At least if you’re below the maximum weight, the Ecom 14 accelerates fairly quickly. This is especially true in the second and third speed modes.
If you’ve never tried a sit-on scooter before, the feeling is quite different from a stand-up scooter. Especially with this model, thanks to its bicycle-style grips and brake levers, it felt more like riding a bike without any pedals attached. The wide base and larger wheels make for a more stable feeling, though this does disappear slightly when taking tighter turns.
Even without suspension, the 14-inch wheels and pneumatic tires soak up road chatter quite well. I was initially worried about the impact of sitting on a rigid frame with wheels this small, but the Hiboy made for a surprisingly comfortable ride.
The scooter even does decently well off-road, which I didn't expect. The lower clearance and fenders mean you don’t want to take it on rough trails, but riding on city paths and other light off-roading shouldn’t be a problem, as long as you’re prepared to move a little slower.
While you can remove the seat to use the Ecom 14 as a stand-up scooter, I didn’t try this, and I imagine most people won’t rush to leave the convenience of the seat behind. Besides, if you only want to stand up briefly, it’s entirely possible to do without removing the seat.
The Hiboy Ecom 14 is easy to set up and use, works great for carrying cargo, and it’s a surprisingly fun ride, even when you take it off paved roads. It’s also quite flexible, with adjustable handlebar height, a removable basket, and even a removable seat, though that’s a bit more involved.
This also means that the scooter is on the heavier side, and you may have a harder time fitting it into smaller spaces, whether in your car or in your home. Still, it’s a fun, practical scooter for city commuting.
Kris Wouk has been writing about technology for more than 10 years, but using it for much longer than that. He has covered Apple and its various products for MakeUseOf, but he's also covered breaking tech news for Digital Trends and other sites. He spends his spare time as a musician, creating and releasing music across multiple projects.BrandWeightRangeBatteryMax. LoadLightsFoldableMotorTop SpeedTiresCharging TimeProsCons