From its origins as “sidewalk surfing” to the present, longboarding has been a favorite hobby of boarders who prefer cruising and downhill racing as opposed to tricks on a standard skateboard. This appreciation for the activity has evolved recently, with electric skateboards becoming the hot new option for riders who want to minimize their effort while retaining the medium’s propensity for functional customization.
No matter how you customize one, electric longboards provide an unconventional, yet comfortable, method of commuting or recreationally traveling through your urban environment or college campus. If you’re in the market for one of these innovative electric boards, you should absolutely check out our reviews of the top 5 best electric longboards of 2019.
Regardless of your budget or your level of longboarding experience, there’s a perfect electric longboard waiting for you. Grab your helmet and grab your new electric longboard as soon as possible so you can learn everything that this modern boarding style has to offer first-hand.
Electric Longboards Reviewed:
Table of Contents
What Makes a Longboard Different?
Origins of the Style
Though it finds its roots back in the 1940s and 1950s with “sidewalk surfing” on the West Coast, longboarding as it is known today gained popularity in the 1970s after the introduction of the urethane wheel. From there, further truck innovations allowed longboarders to maximize their downhill speeds and add responsive turning to the longboards long list of functional benefits.
Of course, longboarding has taken its most recent step forward recently with the introduction of electric longboards. These innovative modes of transportation have managed to find the sweet spot between the effortless motion of motorized travel and the freedom of movement long associated with classic longboards.
Unique Deck Styles
Among all types of skateboards, longboards in particular are known for their wide variety of unique deck types. In fact, “longboards” can take on a variety of shapes and forms, with each model unified together through their implementation of a longer-than-average deck made from several layers of resilient woods such as birch, bamboo, maple, oak, or koa.
“Fishtail” decks are perhaps the most well-known style, identifiable by their implementation of a board shape that decreases the likelihood of the wheels coming into contact with the deck while banking or turning (sometimes called “wheelbite”). This deck style is multi-purpose in nature but is best implemented for cruising longboards.
Despite this primary use, “fishtail” longboards shouldn’t be confused with “cruiser” longboards. These latter models are also used for cruising in some cases, though they are generally constructed to imitate a traditional skateboard with a kicktail. However, these models differ from traditional skateboards greatly given their heightened ability to carve using softer wheels and modified trucks.
How to Customize an Electric Longboard
Longboards (including their electric variants) are a perfect medium for boarders who want to customize their board’s parts to fit their precise performance goals. If you’re thinking about purchasing an electric longboard, you should consider some of these modifications in order to enhance your ride from day one.
Consider a New Wheel Orientation
Many traditional longboarders and electric longboards enjoy trying out new wheel orientations when they are looking to optimize one aspect of their board’s performance, such as its degree of grip or responsiveness. Modifying aspects of the wheel hub can directly affect both aspects, with the only downside being an increased risk of uneven wear and wheel loosening over time.
When purchased pre-assembled, longboards designed for downhill travel typically use offset wheels. This orientation provides less grip overall in exchange for a heightened ability to transfer downward momentum when turning. Riders looking to implement this style should use squared-off wheels to compensate for lost traction.
Centerset wheels, by comparison, are a good method of balancing a longboards performance against its need for maintenance. That is because this orientation generally allows for more even wear across a wheel’s surface, as well as decreases the likelihood of a wheel breaking free. While more speed is lost while turning with centerset wheels, this is balanced out by an increased degree of control over the turn itself.
Try out Bushings or Riser Pads
If you’re looking to change your manual or electric longboard’s responsiveness, the easiest method to accomplish this goal is through the implementation of bushings. Installed onto the truck, these wheel-like add-ons make contact with the board as it turns, allowing for a greater degree of resistance depending on the density of the bushing.
Also, some boarders opt to add what are called riser pads in order to prevent wheelbite on models without devoted deck cutouts. These specialized pads add space between the wheels and deck, decreasing the likelihood of friction occurring during turns. Similarly, shock pads can held decrease the volume of vibrations transferred onto the deck while riding over uneven surfaces.
How to Ride a Manual or Electric Longboard
Learning to ride an electric longboard starts with the base techniques used to safely operate a manual longboard. Though the method of gaining momentum varies, you should begin your quest to successfully ride your new electric longboard with the best practices associated with their manual predecessors.
Whether self-impelled or motor-operated, longboards carry a degree of risk due to their restraint-less operation. As such, your first step towards learning to ride a longboard is to familiarize yourself with the mode’s appropriate safety procedures.
In all cases, this means obtaining and wearing a fitted helmet. Also, you may consider wearing “slide gloves,” a specialized type of padded gloves worn by longboarder to pad their hands when they come in intentional contact with the pavement while turning or carving.
Once you are safely prepared to ride, you’ll need to determine your “dominant” foot for boarding. This leading foot should be placed in a parallel position at the front of the board. From there, the rider can push to impel the board forward (manual longboards) or turn on the remote control and initiate a low speed setting (electric longboards).
Once in motion, the rider should initially bring their feet to a perpendicular position to increase balance before settling to a shoulder-length, parallel position for balanced cruising. When it’s time to stop or slow down, either lower the board’s motoring speed (electric longboards) or place your non-dominant foot on the ground and drag it to perform a “heel brake” (manual or electric longboard).
To learn more about the basics of mounting and operating a longboard, check out this informative video from two longboard professionals:
Reviews of the Top 5 Best Electric Longboards in 2019
If there were a “one-size-fits-all” solution to electric longboards, then the Teamgee H5 would be a prime candidate to claim the title. This model has become a favorite of longboarders across the country due to its persistent reliability and core specifications, which includes a 760 watt dual motor powering a 22 mph top speed over a 11 mile range.
This model’s architecture is also one-of-a-kind. As the only popular electric longboard to use a drop-through deck, the Teamgee H5 enables enhanced stability regardless of your traveling surface. Also, this model comes standard with a built-in bushing system, allowing for more precision and comfort when carving or turning.
Though its artistic deck design may draw you in at first, you’ll never want to use any other electric longboard after riding the Teamgee H5.
- Drop-through deck architecture enables more stable riding experience
- Uses soft bushing system to enable sharper turning with less effort
- Uses two 380 watt motors to reach 22 mph max. speed over 22 mile speed
- Battery life tends to degrade
- 200 lb. weight limit
The BLITZART Huracane has been built with a solid commitment to durability and reliability, both of which contribute to its overall quality. For example, this model can remain intact through many years of use thanks to its deck construction, which combines 6-ply maple wood and 2-ply bamboo to hold a respectable 250 lbs.
You’ll always have a bit of extra juice while riding the BLITZART Huracane as well because its 4.4Ah lithium-ion battery pack is particularly reliable. Better yet, you’ll be able to easily expand on its otherwise weak 6-8 mile range by taking full advantage of this model’s regenerative braking system.
Given that this model comes fully assembled, you’ll be able to use it directly out of the package. As such, you won’t need to waste even a single extra minute preparing to ride this electric longboard if you already possess existing longboarding experience.
- 250 lb. weight limit a result of 6-ply maple wood and 2-ply bamboo construction
- Ships fully assembled for quick onboarding
- 4.4Ah lithium-ion battery pack charges in two hours and recharges through regenerative braking system
- 6-8 mile range is lower than average
- Board is very sensitive to water and moisture
In so many ways, the SKATEBOLT is one powerful electric longboard. This can clearly be seen in its core specifications, which include a swift 25 mph top speed and a lengthy 18.6 mile range. They quality doesn’t end there though, as this model’s 8-layer maple wood deck is sturdy and resilient enough to hold riders up to 280 lbs. without incurring extra wear.
As the 2nd generation of an already popular electric longboard, the SKATEBOLT provides some enhanced features that committed electric longboarders will appreciate. For example, this model includes twin rear red warnings lights that can act as taillights when riding at night or on a shared roadway. These lights can be easily manipulated from this model’s wireless remote, which also includes components for monitoring battery capacity and speed modes.
- Exceptional 18.6 mile range with 25 mph top speed
- Safety taillights for use in dark conditions
- 280 lbs. weight limit is ideal for adult riders
- Repair service based in the United States
- On the pricier end of the competition
This BoardCulture electric longboard is eye-catching, that’s for sure. But this model uses a unique board architecture for more than looks. In fact, this model employs its uniquely-shaped 7-ply Canadian maple wood deck in order to provide its rider enhanced aerodynamics and flexibility while traveling downhill and over rough terrains, respectively.
This model’s motorized components are also worth a second look. With dual brushless 500 watt motors, you’ll be able to reach a top speed on this electric longboard even as you travel up 20% inclines. That even goes for adult riders because this model certifies a best-in-class 300 lbs. weight limit.
Throw in a free carrying backpack and you have one highly-capable electric longboard that is well worth its moderate asking price.
- Visually unique 7-ply Canadian maple deck enhances aerodynamic movements
- 500 watt brushless motors decrease friction to reach 22 mph on 20% inclines
- 300 lb. weight limit is the best in its class
- Comes with free carrying backpack
- Extra batteries are unavailable
- Cannot change rear-wheels
Alouette Phoenix Ryders
Finally, the Alouette Phoenix Ryders electric longboard provides an ideal mode of transportation for new and young riders alike. For example, this model’s 250 watt hub motors top out at a 16 mph top speed, ensuring that inexperienced riders are able to learn the ropes of this exciting hobby with an added degree of safety.
Even for an introductory-class electric longboard, the Alouette Phoenix Ryders provides a descent degree of battery capacity and stamina from its built-in 25.2V lithium battery. New riders in particular will appreciate this model’s cruise control capabilities, which can be adjusted and set from the ergonomic remote control (which itself includes an easy-to-read display screen).
- Beginner model can reach up to 16 mph and climb 10% incline hills
- Brushless hub motors and 25.2V lithium battery provide stamina for 9.3 mile range
- Wireless remote includes cruise control option for simplified commuting
- Default wheels prone to chipping
- Some connectivity problems when braking
You’ve picked the right time to take an interest in electric longboarding because the industry is currently a rich vein when it comes to finding models with enhanced customizability and reliability. Even so, a few of these top-tier electric longboards are the absolute best in their class.
The SKATEBOLT model, for example, is the best overall electric longboard when it comes to core specifications and performance. Few, if any, consumer-grade electric longboard can challenge its 25 mph top speed in combination with its impressive 18.6 mile range. This model’s inclusion of red taillights is simply a further demonstration that it is a fully-fledged electric longboard worthy of committed riders’ attention.
On the other hand, electric longboarders shopping on a budget should check out the Teamgee H5. While this isn’t the cheapest model overall, it is absolutely the best investment given its extended lifespan. Along the way, you’ll also experience one of the most comfortable and responsive rides thanks to this model’s unique drop-through architecture and soft bushing system.