Kandi America launches three new low-cost electric go-karts for off-roading

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Kandi America, best known for its range of electric golf carts and eUTVs, has just unveiled three new electric go-karts designed for off-roading fun.

Sure, off-road go-karts with various sizes of combustion engines are a dime a dozen these days. Those old things have been around for years. But if you want to get your off-road karting fun in without the gasoline fumes, loud noise, engine maintenance, and other downsides of combustion engines, there just aren’t many options out there.

The few electric off-road karts that exist are either designed for children, have specs so pitiful that they ruin the fun, or cost as much as a car.

Enter Kandi America, which seems to have pivoted away from its original NEV plans years ago, leveraging its other expertise in electric golf carts and eUTVs to bring us a mashup of the two: off-road electric go-karts.

The entry-level model in the new go-kart lineup is the Kandi Cyber 1000. It dances dangerously close to Cyberquad aesthetics but offers significantly better performance than the Tesla Cyberquad for Kids and is significantly more likely to exist than the full-size adult-sized Tesla Cyberquad vaporware.

The Cyber 1000 is still fairly entry-level, so its specs aren’t exactly going to blow away most karting enthusiasts. But for its US $2,799 price, which is pretty darn affordable by electric go-kart standards, it still looks like it can offer a fun time.

The 264 lb (120 kg) two-seater kart comes with a 1,000W motor, though that’s the continuous rating and thus it likely puts out higher peak power. The top speed is listed at 15 mph (25 km/h) and the max range is 25 miles (40 km) thanks to the 48V 30Ah (1.4 kWh) battery.

At just 72 inches long (6 ft or 1.82 meters), it’s fairly compact, too. While this is the smallest model in the lineup, it can still support a max payload of 352 lb (160 kg). That’s two average-sized adults or one hefty fella and his kid.

Upgrading to the Cyber 3000 triples the power to 3000 watts, which might explain the switch from shoulder belts to four-point harnesses. The Cyber 3000 is also a larger kart, measuring just over 8 feet or 2.5 meters long and weighing 683 lb (310 kg).

The maximum speed is increased to 18 mph (30 km/h), which isn’t a huge jump, but with the right twisty dirt track you’ll be more focused on the 3,000 watts going into the acceleration than the top speed.

The larger 3.78 kWh battery and bigger motor are likely a major part of the additional weight, though the larger vehicle size and other upgrades like true double-wishbone front suspension don’t make the kart any lighter. The rear seems to have a similar swingarm axle suspension to the Cyber 1000, albeit with a larger axle-mounted electric motor.

Despite tripling the motor power and nearly tripling the battery capacity, the Cyber 3000’s MSRP creeps up to just US $3,799, or just a grand over its little brother.

The third member of the lineup is the Kandi Dart 3000, which appears to feature the same powertrain as the Cyber 3000, though in a slightly wider and slightly lighter chassis. Gone are the cyber-themed body panels, and it looks like the Dart 3000 might have a bit more suspension travel, though the images could be playing with my mind.

The interior is a bit spartan, but that’s par for the course with go-karts. You’re here for the fun, not for the creature comforts.

“Engineered for enthusiasts who crave power, performance, and the freedom to explore, the Dart 3000 combines robust features with unparalleled reliability,” explained the company. “Whether navigating rugged terrains or enjoying a leisurely ride through off-beaten paths, this go-kart stands ready to deliver an unforgettable experience.”

The Dart 3000 shares the same MSRP of US $3,799 with its Cyber 3000 cousin.

Electrek’s Take

These obviously aren’t the kind of karts you’re going to take up some major desert dunes, but they sure do look like fun for general off-road shenanigans. The Cyber 1000 seems a bit small, though still looks to support two adults.

Both of the 3 kW models definitely look like they can handle some real riding, though, and it seems like they’d be a lot of fun on twisty dirt tracks. I might need to get a pile of hay bales and talk to my parents about coming to visit and borrowing a corner of their ranch for a bit.

I didn’t know much about Kandi America until recently when I began testing out Kandi’s Mini electric golf cart. That little guy has actually surprised me with how well-made it is, especially for a $3,999 golf cart. It’s a bit small and is technically a two-seater, though we found it could fit two adults who don’t mind sitting shoulder-to-shoulder in both the front and the back. But despite its small size, it’s strangely powerful even with just a “1,000W” motor. It climbs itself out of ditches and towed my kayak down to the lake just fine. I’ll have the full review of that impressive little golf kart coming soon, but the point is that I’ve been pleasantly surprised with Kandi’s work so far, so I expect these electric go-karts to be well worth their modest prices.

Micah Toll testing out the Kandi Mini electric golf cart

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