In a short period of time, electric scooters have become the new symbol of urban transportation. They’re available in virtually every major city in the world, and for good reason. Electric scooters are light and fold up for easy storage and transportation. They don’t emit any emissions and provide a safe transportation method for urban dwellers.
With all these benefits, should you consider buying an electric scooter? If so, with so many options, which one should you get? This review should help. I’m reviewing the Segway Ninebot Max. This electric scooter is geared for people looking to travel large distances. This could replace a commuter vehicle or bike with a quick, affordable transportation method.
Notable specs of the Segway Ninebot Max
- Top speed: 30 km/h
- Range: 65 km
- 551Wh lithium battery charges in just six hours
- Weight capacity: 220lb
- IPX54 water-resistance construction
- Suitable for riders aged 14 and up
Design of the Segway Ninebot Max
Segway has a long, storied history in urban transportation. The original Segway Personal Transporter was brought to market in 2001. Twenty years later, the Segway Ninebot Max incorporates that rich legacy in a high-performance, portable design with a sturdy build quality.
Like most e-scooters, the Segway Ninebot Max has a T-bar handlebar design with a large slip-proof rubberized platform to stand on. There’s plenty of room to find a comfortable standing position for long commutes. In fact, there’s enough room for two people to ride on it.
It features two large 10-inch pneumatic tires. These tires can withstand multiple punctures (less than 6mm diameter) without tire deflation. They also absorb the shock from bumpy roads to ensure a smooth, comfortable ride. From what I can tell, there is no other suspension system.
For portability, the Ninebot Max has a simple-to-use folding stem on the front. A latch locks into a lever to keep the stem upright during operation. A small safety collar rotates and locks the stem into the latch. This keeps the stem locked during operation.
Folded down, the handlebars latch onto the top of the back tire. From here, the rider can carry the Ninebot Max from the stem. At 41 lbs, it’s definitely on the heavy side. I couldn’t see myself carrying this for a long time.
Charging the Segway Ninebot Max
Unlike other e-scooters I’ve reviewed, the Ninebot Max has a DC converter built under the deck. Instead of a proprietary connection, it uses a standard power connector. This is a fantastic feature. Riders don’t have to carry a bulky charging pack. A conventional 3-prong power cable will do.
Safety features for lithium batteries are important considerations for any e-scooter. The Ninebot Max has 551wh lithium batteries with a Smart Battery Management System. This system monitors the battery status with multiple protection mechanisms. These include short circuit protection, two-way charging and discharging protection, overcurrent protection, and temperature protection.
Also included is a regenerative brake system that recycles energy from riding. Energy is collected every time the throttle is released. This system provides braking and energy collection to extend battery life during trips.
Using the Segway Ninebot Max
The Segway Ninebot Max is a kick-to-start e-scooter. You have to kickstart it before the throttle engages the motor. I found this to be a great safety feature. It prevents the Ninebot Max from accelerating away when the throttle is engaged at a full stop. The last thing you want is the Ninebot Max to run away from you. This prevents that from ever happening.
My first experience with the Segway Ninebot Max was alongside a review of two other e-scooters. I was able to compare and contrast the riding experience between the three.
With respect to overall performance, the Segway Ninebot Max was the clear winner. The solid build and large platform made it a comfortable ride on bikes lanes and cracked sidewalks. It feels smooth, fast and with a 20 percent hill grade, it can climb hills with ease.
I noticed I rarely had to use the brakes. The regenerative brake system does a good job capturing energy while it automatically slows down. After a while, I could time my braking just by letting go of the throttle. I still doubt regenerative braking is capturing enough energy to extend the range. It might make a difference for electric cars that go faster and longer, but not for e-scooters that travel short distances.
Portability and security
The Segway Ninebot Max can handle a max load of 220 pounds. With a backpack, you could use it to pick up some items from a grocery store. However, portability becomes an issue. While it’s quick and easy to fold down, it’s freaking heavy. I couldn’t carry this around in a grocery store for very long.
In all honesty, I wish there was a little hook for a bike lock attachment. I wouldn’t mind carrying a bike cable in a backpack if I could lock this outside to run a quick errand in a store. With a single power button, this is definitely something you can’t leave unattended.
Final thoughts on the Segway Ninebot Max
With respect to urban transportation, e-scooters are here to stay. They’re affordable, fun, quiet, and produce no emissions. There’s also no shortage of e-scooters on the market today. Consumers have a lot of choices. Picking the right one requires careful consideration of your budget, intended use, and storage capabilities.
The Segway Ninebot Max certainly caters to a specific rider. It’s a good choice for someone looking to replace their vehicle for daily commutes. The big question is this. How far are people willing to travel on an e-scooter per day? If you have access to bike lanes and need to go over 20km a day, then this e-scooter is for you. While it has a 65km range, I doubt anyone will want to go that far in a day at 30km/h.
Another important consideration is portability. The riding comfort and range come at a price. The Ninebot Max is hard to carry for any extended period of time. If you have to take it upstairs, I wouldn’t recommend it. Taking it up an elevator is easy, but carrying it around in a grocery store isn’t.
If you’re looking for an e-scooter to travel long distances, this is worth considering. You’ll be hard-pressed to find a more comfortable and effective e-scooter than the Segway Ninebot Max.