Whether you’re enjoying time in nature or commuting to work, getting around quickly and efficiently is key. And in the last several years, the modern, electric scooter has made this task easier than ever before.
Depending on where you live, you can always rent a scooter for transport. But when you have your own, you can actually pack it up and take it places, which is where the true fun begins. That’s where the Varla Pegasus electric scooter takes the stage.
Varla Pegasus Overview
Varla is a company that deals exclusively with electric scooters and their related accessories. The Pegasus is what I would consider their “mid-tier” product when it comes to price – an upgrade from the Wasp and Falcon, but not quite as impressive as the Eagle (and all of its variations).
The Pegasus is great for city commuters, but it can also work well on gravel, bike paths, and other relatively tame terrain. I’ve had no trouble using it on grass and dirt either, though I definitely had to take it much slower. It’s not really designed for off-roading, but you certainly can take it off the beaten path with moderation and a great deal of caution.
But hey, I’m sure some of you are thinking, “Spencer, this is an outdoor themed website. Why are you writing about an electric scooter?” It’s a great question, and frankly, I’m glad you asked.
You see, at Untamed Space, my goal is to help you find balance between your work life and your outdoor hobbies. The Pegasus is a bridge that spans that divide, providing an effect method for commuting to your job, while also giving you more freedom when you’re at the campsite.
In particular, I’ve talked to a number of RV owners who feel somewhat trapped wherever they’re staying – especially if they’re driving a Class A. An electric scooter is a great tool to help them leave their camp setup (whether it’s an RV or a tent), allowing them to explore their surroundings, get some groceries, or feel the wind on their face in a new environment.
Where It Shines
The Varla Pegasus is a powerful scooter, especially when you consider the price point. Strong, reliable, and more than a little fun, there’s no shortage of reasons for why I might recommend it to someone in need of fast, agile transportation.
That being said, I have managed to narrow my list down to 6 specific points. After testing the Pegasus on a variety of terrains and putting over 70 miles on it, here’s where I see it shining the most:
The Pegasus is marketed as having a range of 28 miles on a full charge. I’ve never had the courage to test that claim, but I will say that I’ve gone 21 miles in a single sitting and still had plenty of battery to spare. That being the case, I imagine the 28 mile range is a pretty accurate assessment.
For the sake of comparison, the Lime Gen 2.5 scooter (a popular option for scooter rentals in cities) has a range of 14 miles. Newer models can go up to 20 miles, but that still falls 8 miles short of what the Pegasus can accomplish. Needless to say, the battery is rather impressive and the speed won’t disappoint – but more on that shortly.
In terms of charge time, I find that you can recharge the battery in a handful of hours. If you do intend to use it for your work commute, it would be perfectly reasonable to plug the scooter in while you’re at work and have it fully charged for when you’re ready to go home.
The Pegasus comes with 3 different gear settings. In the owner’s manual that comes with the scooter, the explanation says:
Gear 1 (PAS 1): Top speed = 10 mph
Gear 2 (PAS 2): Top speed = 16 mph
Gear 3 (PAS 3): Top speed = 28 mph
However, after riding around and testing out the different speed settings, I’ve discovered that this isn’t quite accurate. On flat ground, here’s what I’ve found:
Gear 1 (PAS 1): Top speed = 10 mph
Gear 2 (PAS 2): Top speed = 17.5 mph
Gear 3 (PAS 3): Top speed = 31 mph
It’s actually a bit faster than what the owner’s manual indicates, at least when it comes to the PAS 2 and 3 settings. Most often, I keep it in PAS 2, as I find that 17-18 mph is a reasonable speed for getting around. However, kicking it into PAS 3 is quite the satisfying experience – the sudden boost of power puts a smile on my face every time. It’s very effective when you’re faced with an incline or a straightaway with minimal obstacles.
Overall, the Varla Pegasus has a surprising number of customizable features. Speed is an obvious one, but beyond that, there are about 5 other features that you can tweak to really personalize your experience.
|Backlight Brightness||Low, mid, and high|
|Speedometer Units||Adjust between kph and mph|
|Auto-Off Time||Automatically turn the scooter off after 1-60 minutes|
|Start Mode||Choose between a kick start and a “zero” start|
|Odometer Reset||Long press the “Up” button to reset the odometer|
For the most part, I just kept my scooter in the default settings. I did choose to switch the start mode to a kick start, though, since that’s what I’m most familiar with when it comes to electric scooters (the default setting is zero start).
In total, there are 17 different features that you “can” adjust, but 12 of them should be left alone. Things like battery voltage, gear number, rim size, motor magnets, controller voltage protection, and so on. I’m honestly not sure why many of these are included in the settings since they aren’t supposed to be touched, but I’m sure there must be a reason. Whatever the case, just stick to adjusting the 5 features mentioned in the table above, and you should be good to go.
Definition: For the sake of clarity, when referring to start mode, the “kick start” setting requires you to get the scooter moving before the thumb throttle will work. That means that when the Pegasus is at a standstill, pushing down on the throttle won’t do anything.
“Zero start,” on the other hand, means that the throttle will activate when the scooter is stationary.
Overall, it’s hard to complain about the durability of the Pegasus. All of the components have a nice heft to them – they all seem solid and well made, and so far, I have no reason to believe that they won’t last for many years to come.
The vacuum tires are puncture-proof, explosion-proof, and pressure resistant (since there’s no inner tubing), which I find to be rather reassuring. When I’m cruising along at 30 mph, the last thing I want to experience is the feeling of flying through the air after a tire pops. I’ve done it on a bike before, and it was not pleasant, to say the least.
That’s not a concern I have with the Pegasus, though. Not only are the tires durable, but the metal alloy of the frame feels quite solid as well. At 66 pounds, I’d certainly hope it would be able to withstand its fair share of wear and tear, and aside from a squeaky back brake, mine has held up wonderfully.
As you can see from the video, the scooter has a good amount of flex to it. You’ll still feel the bumps when they come, but with far less intensity than you might experience with a non-electric scooter.
As someone who grew up riding Razor scooters almost every day, I know how jarring of a ride it can be whenever you hit a bump, a rough patch of road, or a divet. Without suspension, your hands will hurt from the vibration and you’ll be in for a rocky ride if the pavement isn’t perfectly smooth.
Not so with the Pegasus. The bump has to be pretty big for me to feel it (usually a root pushing up through the asphalt), and even then, I only bounce a little bit. Aside from extreme circumstances like that, I literally don’t feel anything when I’m cruising down the road.
To be honest, I’m a bit of a daredevil. As I already mentioned, I grew up riding scooters almost every day, so I couldn’t wait to put the Pegasus through the paces and see how well it would perform on more technical routes. And to be honest, I’m a little surprised by the result.
The thick tires and low center of gravity make it extremely difficult to wipe out when making sharp turns. Not that I was trying to wipe out, mind you. It’s just that I took more than a few 90 degree corners at a relatively high rate of speed and didn’t feel at risk of falling or sliding.
It’s also worth noting that my wife had never ridden a scooter before the Pegasus, electric or otherwise. I love her dearly, but I have to say, balance has never been one of her strong suits, so… I was somewhat concerned when she hopped on it for the first time.
As it would turn out, my fears were unfounded: she took to it immediately and had very little trouble working the throttle and steering. All that to say, the stability on this scooter is astounding, making it a great choice for beginners and veterans alike.
Disclaimer: The stability of the Varla Pegasus only exists within certain parameters. It’s best not to do anything too wild on wet ground, leaves, gravel, or other questionable surfaces, as the risk of losing control is still present. Make sure you exercise caution and use common sense when piloting the scooter, and don’t attempt any maneuveres that you don’t feel comfortable with.
Potential Pain Points
There’s no such thing as a perfect product, and despite all of its amazing features, the Pegasus does have a few pain points. Here’s the breakdown:
One of the first things I noticed about this scooter is that the steering is a little stiff. Whether I’m riding it down the street or walking it through the halls of my apartment, it takes quite a bit of effort to twist the steering column. Not enough to be problematic while riding, but certainly more than I’d find on a rental scooter lying on the side of the street.
This stiffness really forces more of a “lean and steer” approach. It’s not a problem if you have a lot of practice riding two-wheeled vehicles, but beginners might feel shaky until they get familiar with the sensation. Just take it slow at first and get some experience under your belt – you’ll get comfortable with it in no time.
It’s Tiring to Use
I’ve ridden a number of public use, electric scooters through Minneapolis, Denver, and Salt Lake City. Generally speaking, they’re all the same: after riding long enough, you start to get fatigued. Sore thumb from pushing on the accelerator, tired arms from pulling on the handlebars… You know the drill.
Or am I the only one?
Either way, the same is true for the Varla Pegasus. My thumb, in particular, always starts cramping up after about 15 minutes if I’m not careful. I’ve found that choking up on the right handlebar (where the thumb throttle is located) helps ease the strain, but it’s not a perfect solution.
However, I’m usually not riding long enough to notice any pain, and I think the same could likely be said for you. This is just a small complaint that I have with electric scooters in general, not something specifically against the Pegasus.
To save space and aid in both storage and transportation, the steering bar of the Pegasus folds to meet the deck (the platform that you stand on). This brings its overall height down from 50.4 inches to 20.5 inches, saving you quite a bit of vertical space. Without this feature, I wouldn’t be able to load it into my SUV – a Mazda CX-5 – though sedan drivers will still find it mostly impossible to fit the scooter in their vehicles. At least, not without a good measure of creativity.
But the foldability itself isn’t the problem that I have with the Pegasus. Instead, it’s the process of folding it that I often have a hard time with.
You see, there’s a folding clamp that secures the steering bar, ensuring it stays in an upright position. And while it’s quite effective, releasing it will cause more than a little bit of misery, if you don’t have the proper tools. I always carry a mini crowbar with me when I’m riding (seriously), otherwise I have no way of undoing the clamp with my bare hands.
Sleek and powerful, the Varla Pegasus provides a smooth ride for commuters and outdoor enthusiasts alike. Puncture-proof tires provide a great deal of safety, while the durable frame and suspension offer comfort and stability across both pavement and gravel.
And don’t even get me started on the power… Especially when you have it set on PAS 3, the Pegasus lives up to its namesake, flying over the ground quickly and elegantly.
While it does lack truly off-road capabilities, and it’s quite difficult to fold, I have no reservations in saying that this scooter is the top of its class. Whether you’ve owned or rented an electric scooter before, or you’re new to the scene, the Varla Pegasus is a great option for efficient travel across all types of pavement.
Curious? Check it out below!
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