What Is The Max Speed Of A Tricycle- Manual & Electric

Peter Simms // Last Updated on October 2, 2023

Speed is a crucial factor to consider while buying your toddler a tricycle. That is because it contributes to safety. What is the maximum speed of a tricycle might be something you want to know if you are also concerned about the safety of your young child.

The maximum speed of a tricycle varies between 5 to 10 mph. But it mainly depends on how fast the children can push the pedal. In general, kids can ride the tricycles at a maximum speed of 5 mph.

But why are they unable to reach the maximum speed, and what are the factors that affect the tricycle’s speed? Calm down, as I will answer all your questions throughout the article. Stay tuned till the end.

What is The Max Speed of a Tricycle?

What is The Max Speed of a Tricycle- Manual and Electric

Tricycles for toddlers are designed for stability and safety, not speed. They help toddlers develop their motor skills and physical development.

However, some of you may still want to know about the speed limit for safety. It can vary depending on whether you are talking about manual or electric tricycles.

Let’s have a closer look at the maximum speed of manual and electric tricycles:

1. Manual Tricycle

Manual tricycles do not have motors. Hence, they do not have any speed limits. The maximum speed limit depends greatly on how fast your toddler can push the pedal and move it forward.

Manual tricycles have a maximum speed of around 5 to 10 mph. But on average, toddlers ride around 3 to 5 mph, and they will need greater strength and riding skill to reach that top speed.

Not to mention, adult tricycles can reach a top speed of 20 to 40 mph. That is because they have the strength to push the pedal faster.

2. Electric Tricycle

These tricycles, on the other hand, have motors and a fixed speed limit. Electric tricycles usually have a top speed of 5 to 6 mph.

However, electric tricycles do not help much to improve the toddler’s physical development due to not having to push the pedal. That is why manual tricycles are more popular.

Factors influencing the maximum speed of a toddler tricycle

Factors Influencing the Maximum Speed of a Toddler Tricycle

Besides manual vs electric, there are more factors that affect the maximum speed of a toddler tricycle. They are:

1. Frame and Wheel Size

The size and structure of the tricycle's frame, as well as the diameter of its wheels, play a role in determining the maximum speed. Generally, larger wheels and a sturdy frame increase the top speed of a tricycle.

2. Pedal System and Drivetrain

The efficiency of the pedal system and drivetrain can impact the tricycle's speed. A well-designed pedal system with smooth rotations and minimal resistance can make it easier for your little one to pedal and ride at a higher speed.

3. Weight and Materials

The weight of the tricycle and the materials used in its construction can affect speed. Lighter tricycles made from durable materials can provide a better balance between speed and stability for your toddler.

4. Age and Developmental Stage

Younger toddlers may have limited leg strength and coordination, which can affect their speed. As they grow and develop, they'll naturally become more capable of riding faster.

5. Motor Skills and Strength

The development of your child's motor skills and leg strength influences how fast they can pedal. As they gain more control over their movements and build strength, they'll be able to generate more speed.

6. Surface Conditions

Riding on different surfaces, such as pavement, grass, or gravel, can affect speed. Smoother surfaces generally allow for faster riding, while rough or uneven surfaces may slow your toddler down.

Should Toddlers Ride Tricycles Fast or Slow?

Should Toddlers Ride Tricycles Fast or Slow

For safety reasons, toddlers should ride tricycles slowly because they have poor steering coordination. If they try to ride fast, they may lose control of the handlebar and go in the wrong direction. It can lead to accidents.

That’s why manufacturers also design tricycles in a way that has a lower speed. They keep the wheel size small and modify the pedaling system to be smooth but slower. It keeps your toddler safe while riding the tricycle.


Are there tricycles specifically designed for faster speeds?

Some adult tricycles are specifically designed for faster speeds. However, stability and safety are given more priority by toddler tricycle manufacturers than speed. The key purpose here is to offer a fun ride, not a fast cycle that is unsafe.

Can my toddler ride a tricycle at a speed similar to a bicycle?

No. Bicycles usually have a faster speed compared to tricycles. Hence, your toddler will find it impossible to match the top speed of a bicycle with a tricycle.

Can tricycles go fast?

Yes. Adult tricycles can be quite fast, but not the ones for toddlers. If your toddler has enough strength and practice, they may be able to get it to a fast speed, but it will still be slower compared to bicycles or other adult rides.

Why do tricycles go slow?

Tricycles go slowly to maintain safety for toddlers. Children at earlier ages do not have much control over the steering and have less balance. Therefore, they won’t be able to handle the higher speed. That is why tricycles go slow.


Although tricycle speed is a crucial factor for a toddler's safety, they do not go too fast. Hence, you should worry more about other factors, such as the safety features and your children’s readiness to ride, while buying a tricycle.