Rider Guide’s Editor-in-Chief is a seasoned expert in the electric scooter industry. With a wide-ranging background that includes managing scooter warehouses, selling thousands of motorcycles, and restoring high value (+1M) European sports cars, his expertise is unmatched. Having personally tested more than 100 electric scooters, he offers invaluable insights and recommendations to our readers. We are fortunate to have him as part of our team, as his diverse skill set and extensive experience ensure top-notch reviews.
Zero 9 Summary
In our own surveys, the Zero brand received the highest rating for post-purchase customer support (4.6/5) and an excellent 4.3/5 for overall brand satisfaction. The Zero 8, a similar model from Zero, received a 4.2/5 score for owner satisfaction.
We think the Zero 9 is an ideal scooter for a buyer who is looking for something that is well-balanced, but light enough to carry occasionally. It has robust safety features, excellent brand reputation, and build quality to make it durable for daily use.
Zero 9 Review
The motor generally quiet, except it's noisier at lower speeds. Below 10 mph, you'll have a more noticeable hum. After you accelerate above this, the motor becomes pleasantly quiet.
Compare the tested performance of this scooter with others we've tested on our performance data page.
A typical ride-share scooter would go about half the speed and take 20 to 25 seconds on the same hill.
A typical ride-share scooter is limited to around 16 mph.
The scooter has an excellent 21.7 miles of real-world range, based on our tests. Our range test consists of an urban loop with frequent stops, hill, and rough roads. We test all scooters using the same 165 lb rider with the scooter in its fastest (least energy-conserving) mode.
During our braking tests, we were able to bring the scooter from 15 mph to a stop in 10.2 feet. The typical stopping distance for scooters ranges from 15 to 25 feet. We consider anything under 20 feet to be excellent.
Additionally, the Zero 9 has front and rear spring suspension. The suspension doesn't offer a ton of travel, but has a balance of stiffness/spring. The suspension is optimal for riding on paved roads, but it is good enough for light off-road use on hard-packed dirt roads.
Combined, the pneumatic tires and suspension make for a very comfortable and safe ride.
Zero 9 Electric Scooter: Features
The handlebars have a solid folding screw-type mechanism. This allows them to fold but feel very solid and strong when unfolded. We note that on our test model, the right side would loosen up slightly after long rides. We've seen this before on other scooters with this mechanism.
The whole scooter collapses easily via an anodized metallic tab and hinges mounted onto the scooter deck.
Finally, the adjustable stem also collapses. This allows the scooter to provide good ergonomics to taller or shorter riders without sacrificing compactness.
Coming in at 40 lb, the Zero 9 isn't the lightest scooter for commuting. However, for an average adult, it shouldn't be a problem to occasionally carry it up a flight of stairs. It is compact enough when folded (43-inches by 7-inches by 14-inches), to fit into the trunk of a small car.
If the weight is going to be a problem, consider a Xiaomi Mi M365 or Gotrax GXL Commuter, both top-rated and lighter scooters (and the kings of the Best Electric Scooter Under $600 or our picks for best cheap scooters).
Brakes are operated by hand levers. The LCD speed display (right) has power and mode buttons, as well as an index finger throttle trigger. From this display, different "P-settings" can be adjusted to control regenerative braking strength and acceleration settings.
The hand position on the scooter is ample and excellent for balance. Furthermore, the folding handlebars help keep this design compact for storing and portability.
Zero 9 P-settings
The Zero also has a ridiculous amount of swag lighting. Running up the stem is a bright LED strip. On either side of the deck are LED strips, so-called "ground effects," that light up the road Tron-style.
The lighting is sufficient for providing visibility to others on the road at night. However, both the headlight and tail lights are mounted low and don't project very far.
As always, we recommend extra lighting for safety, but this scooter is equipped for night riding if you forget additional lights or it's out of charge. We also recommend adding a rear, clip-on light placed high (e.g., on a backpack, jacket, or helmet).
Read more about riding safely at night.
Some people complain about flats associated with pneumatic tires. The risk of flats is substantially outweighed by the significant benefits to safety and performance.
You can also dramatically reduce your risk of flats or even repair them using tire slime.
As a bonus, there is nothing attached to the rear of the deck, so your feet can actually hang over the edge, giving you even more space.
The deck has 4-inches of ground clearance, which is enough to drop off most curbs without bottoming-out.
The heavy bolts and abundant stamped metal parts ensure durability. Altogether the excellent build quality ends up making this scooter one of quietest — no annoying rattling, ultra-loud motor, or loosely coupled components.
The thing to note on the model we tested was one of the folding handlebars would loosen up slightly on long rides. We had to periodically re-tighten this, but it wasn't a safety issue.
Zero 9: Review Conclusions
However, if this limitation isn't a problem, for under $1200, you get a portable 40 lb scooter with a respectable range and rich feature set. It is a solid scooter built to be both enjoyable enough and durable enough for daily use.
If the Zero isn't the right scooter for you, see our alternative suggestions. You can also check out our Editor's pick of best electric scooters.