In this paper, two different types of ultra-fast electromechanical actuators are compared using a multi-physical finite element simulation model that has been experimentally validated. They are equipped with a single-sided Thomson coil (TC) and a double-sided drive coil (DSC), respectively. The former consists of a spirally-wound flat coil with a copper armature on top, while the latter consists of two mirrored spiral coils that are connected in series. Initially, the geometry and construction of each of the actuating schemes are discussed. Subsequently, the theory behind the two force generation principles are described. Furthermore, the current, magnetic flux densities, accelerations, and induced stresses are analyzed. Moreover, mechanical loadability simulations are performed to study the impact on the requirements of the charging unit, the sensitivity of the parameters, and evaluate the degree of influence on the performance of both drives. Finally, it is confirmed that although the DSC is mechanically more complex, it has a greater efficiency than that of the TC.