A moped can be a convenient means of transportation that requires no effort from you, as it is motorized, unlike bicycles. If you’re looking at reviews of Fuzion scooters, you will notice that some models offer higher performance than others, so you might be wondering how fast a moped can go.
In this article, you will learn more about mopeds, what they are, what speeds you can achieve, as well as some good reasons why they can be a good option when you don’t want to ride a motorcycle, but not a bicycle, either.
How fast can you go when riding a moped?
Different countries have different rules and legislation regarding mopeds, so the first piece of advice would be to check first what the law where you live says. Mopeds are different from scooters, as it will be explained a little bit later, so you shouldn’t expect them to go as fast as those means of locomotion.
At the same time, they are faster than bicycles and seeing how you don’t have to employ the same effort to make them move, they are a more convenient pick when you want to cover larger distances.
In Canada, for instance, the maximum speed allowed for mopeds is 31mph, provided that the model you choose can reach that performance. In the US, things are pretty much similar, as the law will include in the moped category vehicles that go as fast as 30mph. However, you must bear in mind that different states might have different rules.
In some, the maximum speed allowed for mopeds can be 20mph or 25mph, so make sure that you always verify the legislation in your state before deciding to buy a certain model.
In Europe, different countries have different rules and regulations for mopeds. For instance, in Switzerland, a two-wheeled vehicle that has a motor under 50cc qualifies as a model, and the maximum allowed speed is 19mph, lower, as you can see than in the US or Canada.
How widespread are mopeds?
Mopeds are pretty popular, and, while we haven’t covered all the countries where mopeds are used in the previous section, you should know that you can find and ride one almost anywhere in the world. Some may argue that mopeds are not particularly popular in the US, where scooters and full-fledged motorcycles are considerably more embraced by motorists.
There are several reasons why this happens. In the US, fuel tends to be cheaper than in other parts of the world, so the most logical means of transportation from one point to another is by car. Most people have cars, and they also need to cover large distances, which is why a moped might not be of significant use for them. There is also the issue of safety, which will be addressed in this article, as well.
In Asia and Europe, however, as well as in some parts of Africa, mopeds are quite popular and many people prefer them. Mopeds are considerably cheaper than a car, and they are also easy to learn how to ride. The legislation regarding getting a license to ride a moped is less stringent than for other means of transportation, and, in some parts of the globe, there is not even a license required, such as in South Africa.
What is a moped, anyway?
Some may feel tempted to describe mopeds as motorized bicycles, while others may want to say that they look pretty much like motorcycles reduced to scale. Others use the term interchangeably with scooters, but there are some differences between a scooter and a moped that should not be overlooked, especially since different legislations govern the use of each of them.
You can expect a moped to go a little faster than a bicycle, and you should know that you can use one when traveling on public roads. There is a motorcycle engine employed on its frame, but it also has pedals, just like a bicycle. Scooters, on the other hand, are usually equipped with more powerful motors, and therefore, there are different regulations involved with the use of one on public roads.
As far as design is concerned, standard mopeds come with a step-through frame. Others may look a bit more interesting, appointed with motorcycle frames that include a raised fuel tank, for instance.
Don’t hurry to dismiss mopeds as simple motorized bicycles. Some can be as powerful as low-entry motorcycles, and, provided that you can ride one at full speed where you live, such models can reach up to 70mph. As you can see, nothing is set in stone when it comes to mopeds and their maximum speed.
The single general rule – that still doesn’t apply everywhere you can find mopeds – is that they should have motors up to 50cc. Don’t be surprised to find models that are more powerful than 50cc, in some countries, and still called mopeds.
Some safety advice you should be aware of
Since mopeds can’t go as fast as motorcycles and even scooters, you might expect them to be safer as a means of transportation on public roads. Nonetheless, you should be aware that, while it is true that they can be considered more reliable than motorcycles, there can be other situations where they can prove to be less safe than that.
For instance, because it is a smaller vehicle than a motorcycle, a moped might not be that easy to see by other motorists, and especially car drivers. It is a good idea to wear reflective clothes to let your presence known on the road.
A common situation is for cars to approach mopeds faster than expected, when riding behind, and that can lead to collisions. Also, if you’re using a moped on highly trafficked roads, you should expect other motorists to be more concerned with other vehicles, and not with yours.
There is another safety consideration that can make a moped more dangerous than it is. As owners want to achieve greater speeds, they opt for tuning their motors, therefore making their mopeds faster. However, while the engine can deliver higher speeds, the rest of the moped is not designed to handle such a thing, therefore becoming less safe for the rider.
Some Finish surveys on tuned mopeds discovered that such vehicles could reach 44mph, which is far greater than the admitted 28mph, as the maximum speed for mopeds established by the legislation. In Finland, where mopeds are quite popular, such numbers can be considered unsettling, especially since most of the teenagers riding a moped had apparently tuned their vehicles for higher speeds.
What about the sports moped?
This vehicle has quite a long and interesting history, and this article on how fast a moped can go would not be complete without talking about the sports moped. This was a type of moped developed in the 70s, in the UK.
The design was focused on offering higher performance, and supposed to cater to riders that turned 16 but weren’t allowed to drive a motorcycle. The limitation for teenagers was to ride only vehicles to 50cc engines until the age of 17.
However, it must be remembered that sports mopeds, despite being equipped only with 50cc engines, were nothing short of mini motorcycles. That meant that they could go as fast as 50mph, considerably faster than regular mopeds.
The audience for the sports moped included young men, and the launch of this model created a real cultural shift, in the sense that more and more teenagers and young people got involved in riding such vehicles. They started to organize competitions that would include choppers, scooters, roadsters, and many other similar vehicles.
However, no matter how popular, the sports moped was clearly not a good choice for the public roads. Towards the end of the 70s decade, new legislation and other regulations came into play, limiting the maximum speed such a vehicle was supposed to achieve to only 30mph.
Also, the same laws established the maximum weight for such a vehicle, to 250kg (550 pounds), so that the manufacturers couldn’t ‘cheat’ and create mopeds that were nothing but motorcycles in disguise.
It doesn’t really matter how fast a moped can go since it’s much more critical for you to abide by the laws that govern the use of such a vehicle. Tuning a moped to achieve higher speeds is illegal, so be aware of all the implications before you buy one.