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When Segway merged with Chinese mega-company Ninebot, nobody could have guessed that they were planning to diverge from the typical “hoverboards” that had made Segway a household name, and take the e-scooter market by storm.
Yet, here we are, in the presence of not just one awesome Segway Ninebot electric scooter, but a whole range to choose from (we’re very spoiled), and I decided to take their flagship model, the MAX, for a spin.
Today, I’m going to talk about my experience with this slick little e-scooter: what I think it does well, what I think could be improved upon, and whether I’d recommend purchasing it. Let’s get to it!
Segway Ninebot Electric Scooter Review
No time to take in my full review? No problem. Get the gist with this handy pros and cons section.
- Awesome “self-healing” pre-slimed tires
- Smooth ride despite no suspension
- Great folding mechanism
- Capable of long-range riding
- Built like a tank
- Looks awesome!
- IPX5 water resistant
- Decent factory lights
- Epic LED display
- Easy to control
- Kick-to-start safety mechanism is perfect for novice riders
- Roomy deck
- Not that snappy off the mark
- Weight limits portability
- Kick-to-start may put seasoned riders off
Where Can You Purchase The Segway Ninebot MAX?
Build And Durability
As you’d expect from these two experienced companies, the build quality of the MAX really is second to none. As soon as I got it out the box, I could tell it was something special. It just feels so sturdy, both in hand when carried, and during a ride.
In my opinion, it’s the ultimate commuter scooter, as it can handle the rough and tumble of daily use without dipping in performance whatsoever.
The sharp lines give it the appearance of material unity, as if hewn from a single piece of metal, and although this, of course, is not the case, there does seem to be a distinct lack of contact zones, meaning it’s built tough!
It’s also rated IPX5 water-resistant, so it can handle a light spattering of rain, but nothing severe. I personally just try to avoid riding in it in rain altogether, although the tires are perfectly capable of providing grip on slick surfaces, but more on them later.
I absolutely adore the Ninebot MAX cockpit. Featuring a sizable, central LED display, all key information is relayed with clarity.
It takes all of a glance to get all the details you need, meaning you don’t have to break focus on the path ahead to monitor your ride status. This increases the safety of the ride a great deal!
The LEDs are vivid enough for clear readings in the bright light, and when night falls, they automatically dim to reduce glare and let the front lights take the reins.
All functionalities, including the lights, power, and riding mode, are controlled with the single button below the display. It’s a bit of a stretch for the thumb, but I wouldn’t say it was awkwardly positioned.
The grips are crafted from high quality, super comfortable materials, and the thumb throttle has a tacky rubber surface to aid in control.
The deck, or platform (whichever you prefer), is nice and big, which is a godsend for those longer journeys when you need a bit of wiggle room to stay comfortable and alert. It measures 17.4 cm x 50.3 cm, which is much larger than most competitors on the market.
It has a raised surface coated with super grippy rubber, perfect for supporting a variety of rider stances. Unless you have Shaq-size feet, you should be able to fit both on the deck, heel to toe.
The LED lights on the MAX are pretty decent. The headlight is positioned to provide the widest field of light and increase visuals when riding in poor light conditions. The rear brake light is pitched on the fender and does its job relatively well.
They’re sufficient for most riders, but if you do a lot of riding after dark, it’s definitely worth picking up some aftermarket luminance.
Acceleration And Top Speed
The MAX arrives with a 350-watt motor, which is mighty impressive when compared to a lot of other e-scooters in the commuter class; however, in terms of pure acceleration, it’s not going to blow your socks off.
During my early tests, I reached about 15 mph in about 5 and a half seconds. It takes much longer to reach its top speed of 18 mph, but I can testify that it does get there in the end.
I’d also like to remind readers that this is a “kick to start” model, meaning you have to push off manually until you reach 1.75 mph, when the assist fires up.
This is a great safety feature for beginner riders, but if you’re an experienced rider looking for a zippy ride from stationary, it’s going to be a bit of a letdown.
Battery And Range
According to these partner companies, the MAX can travel as far as 40 miles on a single charge, which is nuts!
Unfortunately, I couldn’t replicate these results during my testing, reaching only just over 26 miles before the battery gave up the ghost, but this is still very impressive, especially as it’s quite a heavy beast.
When I got home, I plugged it in, and it reached 100% in about 6 hours, exactly as advertised.
Tires And Ride Quality
On the tire front, you get a 25.4 cm pneumatic, tubeless design, fantastic at taking the bite out of street terrain. They contribute a very smooth ride indeed, but they’re also practical in another way.
These tires come pre-slimed, which sounds grosser than it is. Tire slime is essentially a product that fills punctures in real-time as they happen, keeping you up and running even with a hole in your tire — pretty neat, right?
The tread pattern is pretty much by-the-numbers for a commuter scooter, but it does work exceedingly well. Over loose terrains such as gravel and sandy beach-side roads, it keeps you stable and in control.
Sadly, there is no suspension to speak of on the MAX, but the quality of the tires helps to reduce turbulence a great deal.
Don’t get me wrong, if you take on some particularly gnarly surfaces, you’ll definitely feel your teeth rattling, but, even so, the MAX is a lot comfier than some other dual suspension e-scooters I’ve tested in the past.
The extra deck space I mentioned earlier also contributes to a really enjoyable ride. Are you going to be carving the road up with this thing? No, but you’ll keep up with motorists and feel nice and cozy while doing so.
For my gradient test, I used a hill with a 10% grade. It’s roughly 230 feet in length, and I weigh roughly 147 lbs. The MAX hit the summit in about 19 seconds, maintaining a speed of just under 9 mph which I was quite pleased with.
Steeper hills did pose something of a problem, especially as you have to kick to get the scooter up to speed before the assistance has your back, but for most uphill battles, the MAX wins out!
Braking distances below 13 feet is considered outstanding in the e-scooting world, and the Segway Ninebot blew that standard out the water with a braking distance of 11 feet.
It doesn’t quite have the stopping power of its more rudimentary counterpart, the MAX G30LP, but it’s also a lot heavier, so that’s to be expected.
The brakes themselves are a drum design completely protected by the enclosure of the scooter, meaning they never really need any maintenance. One lever controls both the front and back brakes, which may irk seasoned riders, but beginners will appreciate the ease of use.
Braking feels silky smooth on this electric scooter, with minimal drag, and the lever has the perfect amount of resistance, for my tastes at least anyway.
At 41.88 lbs, the Segway Ninebot MAX is right on the cusp of what can technically be considered portable, and although it folds down, it’s not something I’d enjoy lugging up a flight of stairs to reach an office after a commute.
Speaking of the folding mechanism, though, it is really great. It’s easy to use, and the stem clips into place securely on the rear fender to prevent accidental unfolds in transit. It’s a pretty comfortable scooter to carry, too, but that weight limits its portability.
Value For Money
Is the MAX worth the money? Yes, definitely. Sure, the price tag is pretty up there compared to a lot of other commuter class e-scooters, but it also outperforms them in almost every respect, which is why I had no problem paying what I did for it.
The Segway Ninebot comes with a 1-year limited warranty — it’s not the best, but I’ll take it over no warranty any day.
The Final Verdict
The MAX is an absolute workhorse! It’s not the fastest mare in the stable, especially in terms of acceleration, but it’s sturdy and reliable, capable of surviving years of heavy-duty usage.
Considering its weight, it’s also a really great climber, making it a suitable choice for commuters who have some challenging peaks to tackle.
And, to be honest, I don’t mind the extra weight when it comes in the way of a large deck, as the extra space makes it an absolute joy to ride over longer distances.
It’s not one for the thrill seekers out there, but if you want a durable and stylish means of getting from A to B that won’t break down on you, I can’t recommend the Segway Ninebot MAX enough.
I give the Segway Ninebot MAX 4.8/5