Three-wheeled scooters are hugely popular with kids between the ages of 2 and 5. Known as kick scooters, these consist of three wheels mounted to a foot platform and handlebars.
The extra wheel makes it super easy for little ones to learn to balance. While there are plenty of stunt-friendly cruisers, most feature lean-to-steer technology that makes balancing and turning even more attainable.
What to Look for in a three-wheeled Scooter
Still a bit confused on what you should be looking for when shopping for a three-wheeled scooter? Here’s what you need to look for:
Scooter handlebars should always be level with a child’s waist whenever they are standing on the footboard. When handlebars are set too low or high children find it difficult to balance and steer themselves. Most scooter handlebars are set on an adjustable pole. The entire unit is often referred to as a T-bar. Some handlebar adjustments require tools, and some do not. While it’s nice having the option to adjust or disassemble a scooter on the fly, tool-less adjustment points may prove to be problematic in households with budding engineers.
Shopping is never fun or easy when it means being confronted by an array of unfamiliar jargon. With that, we think it’s ripe time we discuss the term ‘lean-to-steer.’ Lean-to-steer mechanisms allow children to shift their body weight to turn left and right. This type of riding is ideal for young cruisers, as they might topple over after struggling with a jerky T-bar. This riding style is sometimes referred to as sidewalk surfing. It makes the scooter feel like a skateboard with a vertical support pole.
Don’t forget to check a scooter’s weight capacity. Many of the three-wheeled models max out around 50 pounds. However, we did come across a few models with weight capacities greater than 100 pounds.
While an extra wheel is sure to reinforce a scooter’s stability, a wide, grippy foot platform ideal for rider safety and comfort. The shape of the foot platform can also impact riders’ ability to remain stable.
Pay close attention to the material makeup of a scooter. Alloy steel and aluminum frames can put up with plenty of abuse. Even still, it’s usually shoddy plastic footboard and cheap foam handlebar grips that lead to the premature demise of these playthings.
We love a good bargain as much as the next parent. However, the old adage, ‘you get what you pay for,’ really rings true in the realm of scooters. Be wary of too-good-too-be true sales pitches. We’ve done enough experimenting to know that cheaper rides usually end up in the junk pile. Faulty foot platforms and loose handlebars aren’t merely inconveniences; they put your child’s safety at risk.
Some three-wheeled scooters feature removable or flip-up seats. Models like this double as balance bikes. They may help a child to develop their gross-motor skills and self-confidence. They’re proven to make a child’s transition into bike riding even easier. If you’re a budget-savvy parent, you should also be able to appreciate the fact that scooter seats compound the value of your child’s scooter.
Another stimulating scooter element is LED lighting. Children just love seeing their scooters light up the sidewalk. A little magic goes a long way! We’ve seen models with light-up T-bars, foot platforms, and wheels.
Have fun while picking out your kiddo’s new scooter. There are plenty of fun colorways and unique designs to choose from.
Our picks of the best 3-wheel scooters
We went and selected seven of our favorite three-wheeled scooters to share with you, our readers!
Best overall 3-wheel scooter
Topping off our list is a smooth, stable, Swiss-made ride that will give your child the confidence that they need to become a master of the pavement. The Maxi’s lean-to-steer mechanism plays upon children’s intuitive riding style. While you may see this term used by many manufacturers, it was actually coined by Micro. Not only does lean-to-steer technology eliminate jerky, fall-inducing turns, but it also enables older children to surf down the sidewalk.
An adjustable T-shaped handlebar gives children ample support while extending the scooter’s age limit. It can be extended 24 to 34 inches from the deck. The Micro Maxi (check pricehttps://www.amazon.com/dp/B01BMAPN08?tag=wetheparents-us-20&linkCode=ogi&th=1&psc=1 on Amazon) is recommended for sidewalk surfers between the ages of 5 and 12. It can support up to 110 pounds. The Maxi’s fiberglass footboard’s extra grippy surface provides hesitant young riders with much-needed extra insurance. The ultra-comfortable handgrips keep kids from developing finger blisters. The trio of wheels keeps kiddos from toppling over as they cruise down the sidewalk.
Children have their pick of 10 bright footboard colors. While this model is certainly pricer than your run-of-the-mill alternatives, it’s built to endure several years of pavement perusing. Moreover, customers are the recipients of a 2-year warranty (a gold standard in the toy industry) and award-winning customer service.
The Scooter comes unassembled, but all you have to do is insert the T-bar and ride. The hex wrench that’s required for handlebar height adjustments is included for free. Micro utilizes a minimalist style of construction, which means the few parts that make up this amazing scooter are all replaceable. Since the scooter weighs just 5.5 pounds, your kiddo should have no trouble carrying it a short distance on their own.
Like what you see but shopping for a child under the age of 5? The Micro Mini is an equally robust three-wheeled scooter that’s perfect for daredevils between the ages of 2 and 5.
Parents have nothing but positive things to say about these Swiss-made scooters. If you’ve ever ridden a generic, budget-grade model, it won’t take you long to notice the Micro’s superior engineering.
Read our Micro Maxi full review here.
What we love
- Suitable for children between the ages of 5 and 12
- 100-pound weight capacity
- A quality toy that’s sure to take on a life of its own
- The Micro Maxi is easily the most expensive scooter on our list
Best Scooter with LEDs
The Jetson’s Saturn Three-Wheeled Scooter (check price on Amazon) is a classic ride with glitzy battery-powered lights. The LEd-embedded wheels, footboard, and T-bar sparkle and shine each time your kid explores the sidewalk. This gives your child greater visibility while brightening their fun.
Of course, even the most reluctant rider will safe atop the Jetson’s sturdy, textured footboard and trio of PVC wheels. We’re big fans of this scooter’s lean-to-steer system, which promotes gross motor skills, coordination, and personal growth.
In case you hadn’t guessed it, we’re gung ho about safety. The rear foot brake enables kids to come to a complete stop in an instant. The grippy handlebar adjustment feature ensures that the T-bar is always at the right height for fast-growing children. Since the scooter’s adjustment points are toolless, this scooter can easily be shared between siblings and friends. The featherweight plastic footboard boasts alloy steel reinforcements.
This scooter comes in a variety of kid-friendly colors, including blue, green, purple, and red. A below-the-deck switch enables kiddos to toggle the LED lights on and off. Check out this unboxing video to see the Jetson in action.
The Saturn’s foldable design is a huge benefit for families that live life on-the-go. Check this video to see just how easily you can fold up this three-wheeled push toy. The scooter is covered by a pretty generous 1-year warranty and 7-days/week customer support.
What we love
- 100-pound weight limit
- LED-embedded PVC wheels
- Suitable for children age 3 and up
- Comes with a comprehensive owner’s manual
- Comes in four kid-friendly colors
- Rear foot brake, padded handlebars, and a handlebar adjustment feature
- Limited availability makes this a highly allusive item when it comes to online and in-person shopping
Best 3-in-1 scooter
The geniuses at SmarTrike have managed to create a three-wheeled scooter that expands with a child’s capabilities. The T5 SmarTrike Toddler Scooter (check price on Amazon) has two unique riding modes, including one for beginners (lean-to-ride) and another for advanced riders (rotatable handlebars). SmartTrike’s proprietary T-lock system allows parents to easily unlock the tilt-to-turn, freestyle mode when they feel that their child is ready for a challenge. It comes as no surprise that SmarTrike prides itself as the “number one in the three-in-one”
The T5 is more than an innovative design. The durable yet lightweight aluminum frame and steel brake ensure that this little scooter can withstand the pressures of even the most clumsy riders. You better believe your child’s feet won’t slip and slide on top of the wide, textured thermoplastic rubber footpad.
Shopping for a toddler? SmartTrike’s T1 is an even better option. It even comes with a removable toddler seat. You basically get a scooter and a balance bike for the price of one. If you like your T1, you can always graduate to the T5 starting when your kiddo turns 3. The T1 is perfect for kids 15 months and up. See the T1 scooter in this brief video.
Consumers most choose between green or pink versions of T5. Both colors are set on top of a stark black backdrop. The high-contrast colorways hide dirt and wear well while still offering a burst of color. The scooter is 55.5 inches long with a 26.5-inch wide platform. The telescopic handlebar extends from 58 to 79.5 inches in height.
Customers seem to share in our enthusiasm for SmarTrike products. It seems that the company’s science-backed innovations make them a shoo-in with modern-day parents.
What we love
- Unique T-lock mechanism sets the stage for two riding styles (beginner and advanced)
- Allows developmentally appropriate lean-to steer and more advanced tilt-to-turn stunt riding
- Swiss design
- TPR rubber footboard
- Aluminum frame and rear steel brake
- Telescopic handlebar ensures that this scooter will grow with your kiddo
- Brakes are not very effective at high speeds
Best budget buy
When Razor USA launched in 2000, they sold over 5 million products, and their scooter was named Toy of the Year. The company has managed to keep up with the competition by constantly expanding its product lines. Their Jr. Lil Kick (check price on Amazon) is one of the most affordable and sought-after three-wheeled scooters on the market.
This model features a resilient alloy steel frame with a rear brake pedal and a slip-resistant deck. Large wheels and an extra-wide standing platform boost kiddos’ stability for safer, more confidence-boosting cruising. The Razor also has a padded T-bar with incredibly cushiony handlebar grips.
This particular model is recommended for kids 3 years and older up to 45 pounds. If portability is at the top of your priorities, you might also like Razor’s Folding Kiddie Kick Scooter. check it out here. Both the Folding Kiddie Scooter and the Lil’ Kick are available in blue and pink.
One of our favorite Lil’ Kick features is the swooping rear pedal. Its upward curve seems to help kiddos keep their feet centered on the footboard
Check out this video to see 3-year-old Austin take the Lil’ Kick on the parking lot adventure. As you can see, the Lil’ Kick is perfect for kids 3 and older. Keep in mind that rider capacity maxes out at 45 pounds. While you’ll be graduating to a bigger scooter before you know it, you won’t regret having invested in such a reliable learning vehicle.
What we love
- Available in blue and pink
- Heavily padded handlebars
- A wide, slip resistant deck and large urethane wheels
- Promotes balance, coordination, and confidence
- Not height-adjustable
Best for toddler scooter
KicksyWheels (check price on Amazon) is a three-wheeled scooter that was designed with growing kids in mind. This expandable, dual-mode ride is suitable for children between the ages of 3 and 10. It boasts all of your standard features as well as a few innovative bonuses.
A foldable, removable seat allows blacktop newbs to cruise along in style. Meanwhile, scoot mode enables children to enjoy the dynamics of lean-to-steer navigation. The Kicksy also boasts a telescopic handlebar with four adjustable height settings. You can gradually adjust the height of the scooter as your kiddo grows.
This item comes in six super fresh color combos, including Lemon Blush (deep pink base with metallic gold handlebars), Yellow Tangerine (orange base with yellow handlebars), and
Nordic Red (cherry red base with snow-white handlebars). If your kiddo loves bold, blocked colors, they’ll totally appreciate the Kicksy’s flashing PU wheels.
Customers agree that the Kicksy is a quiet and smooth ride. The wide deck and rear brake provide little cruisers with exceptional stability. The Kicksy’s front wheels are slightly larger than the rear one. This ensures that the scooter can run on bumpy, uneven surfaces.
What we love
- Suitable for children 1-year and up, up to 110 pounds
- Designed to handle the abuse of small children
- Lean-to-steer technology helps children with coordination and balance skills
- It offers a smooth, quiet ride on even the bumpiest surfaces.
- Removable, foldable seat gives children the option to sit or stand
- Suitable for children between the ages of 3 and 10
- Back wheel wears out quickly with regular braking
Best for learning
The Chillafish Scotti (check price on Bed Bath & Beyond) is an excellent ride for first-timers or little ones that are hesitant to hit the pavement. The lean-to-steer scooter has a twin-tip, anti-slip deck with an integrated brake. Children are likely to gain confidence and skill with the help of the bonus wheel and extra-symmetrical footpad. It also has a durable steel frame and adjustable height handlebars with ultra-comfy grips. The scooter is suitable for children ages 3 and up.
Chillafish offers next-level aesthetics. The Scotti Scooter line features three stellar colorways, including blue, pink, and red models. We’re particularly fond of the blue version, which features a sky blue board, matching handlebars, matte black accents, and salmon hardware and wheels.
One of the things that really sticks out when it comes to ChillaFish products is their soft, rubberized materials. Moreover, their interpretation of the three-wheel scooter feels particularly innovative and hip. They now make a three-wheeled scooter with LED lights in the wheels. We definitely want in on that magic!
What we love
- Three modish colorways (our favorite is the blue)
- Adjustable handlebars (no tools required)
- Handlebars can be removed completely for easier storage and transportation
- Lean-to-steer mechanism is perfect for first-timers
- Twin-tip deck with anti-slip surface for increased security
- Sure to boost the confidence of even the most hesitant first-timers
- Footpad is slightly thinner than others
Best for speed
The LaScoota (check price on Target) was the first kick scooter we saw that had a removable seat. The three-wheeled ride has all the hallmarks of a traditional three-wheeled scooter plus some innovative bonuses. It feels like you’re getting a pushbike and a scooter all in one.
Kiddos can opt for a traditional lean-to-steel standing position or a seated, balance bike-like approach. As you can see in this video, the seat is held in place with the help of a single screw. We found that both riding positions promoted children’s balance and coordination.
The LaScoota’s light-up wheels are also a welcome addition. The colorful LEDs will create a spectacular illusion anytime your kiddo partakes in a nighttime ride. We also love that this scooter grows with its riders. It boasts a total of four height adjustment points. It is expected to accommodate children between the ages of 3 and 12.
The aluminum and plastic frame proved to be incredibly resilient. This model is capable of moving along at a much faster rate than most alternative push scooters. Not to mention, the scooter is available in nine fabulous colorways.
What we love
- Suitable for children between the ages of 3 and 12
- Flashing PU wheels make for spectacular night rides
- Four adjustable height positions ensure that this scooter grows with its riders
- Removable seat transforms this three-wheeled scooter into a makeshift balance bike
- Padded handlebars for extended comfort
- Available in a wide range of kid-friendly colors
- Don't try and use for stunts
And the winner is…
If you’re looking for a reliable, rugged three-wheel scooter that’s sure to get passed down to a younger sibling or next-door neighbor, we highly recommend the Micro Maxi (check price on Amazon). This epic Swiss-made scooter is nearly indestructible. Kids up to the age of 12 are sure to enjoy the added stability of the third wheel and steel-enforced frame. No stunt is off limits. Of course, all of the other models are sure to keep your kiddo safe and amused.