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Ninebot KickScooter MAX Review

This fully-loaded machine is fast, powerful, and can stop on a dime
Ninebot KickScooter MAX
Credit: Laura Casner
Editors' Choice Award
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Price:   $800 List | $800 at Amazon
Pros:  Powerful, extensive travel range, comfortable
Cons:  Long recharge time, bulky, heavy
Manufacturer:   Segway
By Nick Miley and Austin Palmer  ⋅  Apr 6, 2020
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83
OVERALL
SCORE


RANKED
#1 of 11
  • Range - 25% 9
  • Power - 25% 8
  • Ride - 20% 8
  • Portability - 15% 7
  • Braking - 15% 9

Our Verdict

The Ninebot MAX is packed with practical features that make long rides a breeze. It's fast, has a fantastic brake system as well as front and rear lights that increase its safety. It has a broad standing platform for comfort and wide bars for greater control. Our only complaint is that the machine is big and heavy. However, it's not unwieldy, and the drawbacks to portability are worth it in light of the riding performance.

Compare to Similar Products

 
Awards Editors' Choice Award Editors' Choice Award Best Buy Award   
Price $800 List
$799.99 at Amazon
$500 List
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$400 List$530 List
$459.99 at Amazon
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Pros Powerful, extensive travel range, comfortableSmooth ride, long battery life, easy to carryFast, front suspension, decent travel radiusLight-weight, easy to fold, zippyLong range, portable, fast
Cons Long recharge time, bulky, heavyBrakes may require maintenance, long recharge intervalCruise control defaults to ON, tires quick to wear, steering column lock lack redundancySo-so range, slow to recharge, struggles on steep hillsVariable performance
Bottom Line This powerful scooter is easy to operate and has a long battery life but it’s not the easiest to carryIf you’re looking for a swift and stylish scooter that’s comfortable and easy to use the machine is the ticketSpeed, affordability, and a commute-capable range are just some of the characteristics that offset this machine’s subpar wheel designThis reasonably priced scooter will appeal to commuters as it is speedy, fun, easy to collapse, and is relatively lightweightWhen the Tomoloo was working correctly it was considered a top contender but the scooter often proved temperamental and inconsistent
Rating Categories Ninebot... Xiaomi Mi M365 Hiboy MAX Razor E Prime III Tomoloo L1
Range (25%)
9
8
8
4
6
Power (25%)
8
6
8
7
4
Ride (20%)
8
8
6
8
8
Portability (15%)
7
8
6
9
8
Braking (15%)
9
6
7
6
7
Specs Ninebot... Xiaomi Mi M365 Hiboy MAX Razor E Prime III Tomoloo L1
Measured Maximum Speed 16.7 mph 14.9 mph 19.3 mph 18.4 mph 15.3 mph
Measured Effective Range 25 miles 12.8 miles 12.2 miles 8.2 miles 10.9 miles
Measured Charge Time 6 hours 5 hrs 10 min 4 hours 30 min 6 hours 4 hrs 40 min
Brake Type Front mechanical drum brake. Rear regenerative electric brake. Front electronic brake and rear disc brake Front electronic brake and rear disc brake Front electronic brake and rear fender brake Front electronic brake and rear disc brake
Tire Type Pneumatic Pneumatic Solid rubber Pneumatic front
Solid rear
Pneumatic
Tire Size 10" 8.5" 8.5" 8" 8.5"
Lights Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes
Screen Yes Battery indicator only Yes No Yes
App Yes No Yes No Yes
Maximum Load 220 lbs 220 lbs 220 lbs 220 lbs 220 lbs
Bell Yes Yes Yes No Yes
Measured Weight 43.4 lbs 27.2 lbs 35.2 lbs 24 lbs 29.3 lbs
Battery Type Lithium Lithium Lithium Lithium Lithium
Motor 350 Watt Rated 250 Watt
Max 500 Watt
350 Watt 250 Watt Rated 250 Watt
Max 500 Watt

Our Analysis and Test Results

When it comes to long-range, foldable scooters, you can't do much better than the Ninebot MAX. This machine is fast and can keep up the pace mile after mile. It's loaded with convenient and practical features like head and tail lights, an illuminated dashboard display, and pneumatic tires. Additionally, the single lever, dual brake system is easy to operate, leaving you free to maneuver the vehicle when the unexpected happens. While this machine is expensive, when compared to similar products it's quite affordable.

Performance Comparison


This scooter can cruise mile after mile -- 26 miles to be exact. The...
This scooter can cruise mile after mile -- 26 miles to be exact. The cushy pneumatic tires and broad standing platform keep the rider comfortable all the while.
Credit: Laura Casner

Range


The MAX proved to be a beast in matters of power and runtime. This model will cruise at 12-15 mph for 129 minutes, providing a 185-pound rider with an effective travel range of ~26 miles. This machine darn near wore out riders as they lapped the test track over and over again. Our only complaint (aside from watery eyes and a bit of dizziness) was that the 551 watt-hour lithium-ion battery took 6 hours to recharge. That said, with a travel range like this vehicle has, you won't have to plug it in very often.


We ran extensive tests on the products in this review to get accurate data on range; the distance that a scooter can travel on a single charge. We use the same test track for all our range testing for consistency. When the battery is fully exhausted from the range test, we plug it in, start a timer and monitor it until the recharge light indicates a full charge.

The MAX packs enough speed to make your eyes water. More...
The MAX packs enough speed to make your eyes water. More practically, it makes longer commutes and negotiating other vehicles on the road a breeze.
Credit: Laura Casner

Power


The power metric consists of two tests: hill climbing and top speed. The MAX's performance in these evaluations made it a leader in the class. The steepest hill in our tests maxes out at 10.5% and only slightly slowed the scooter. Additionally, the top speed of this vehicle registered at an impressive 16.7 mph.


We ran each test multiple times for accuracy. The max speed test was conducted on flat ground and repeated three times. The three tests were then averaged. As for the hill tests, there are three hills that we use, beginning with a fairly shallow incline and ramping up incrementally. The stepped approach to hill climbing is a legacy feature. When we started testing scooters, many were not that powerful and hills posed a significant challenge. Many of the newer models pack significantly more power, as is the case with the Ninebot MAX, but nonetheless have to be run through all the same tests as their predecessors.

Ample pneumatic tires and a mechanical drum brake make the ride and...
Ample pneumatic tires and a mechanical drum brake make the ride and braking characteristics on this model superb.
Credit: Laura Casner

Ride


It's all fine and dandy if a scooter can go fast and do so for a long time. However, if the time spent on that scooter is rattly and insecure, then it will be less desirable to take a prolonged spin. In contrast to power, the ride metric measures how comfortable, and ultimately, safe the machine is when cruising. We are happy to report that the MAX is a class leader in this evaluation. In comparison to its peers, this whip is smooth as silk.


For this assessment, we use a particularly crack and bump ridden section of road near our lab. We run the scooters down this road with a focus on how comfortable and in control we feel. It may seem a bit subjective, but be assured that after running this gauntlet a few times, products like the MAX, with its beefy, air-filled tires, broad standing platform, and plush rubber grips really stands out.

A single hand lever simultaneously activates the front drum brake...
A single hand lever simultaneously activates the front drum brake and rear electric brake. The combination is powerful, promoting stability when it matters.
Credit: Laura Casner

Braking


While it's easy to get carried away thinking about blowing your hair back while carving the blacktop, at some point you'll have to hit the brakes. It's best to think about brakes before you need them. Thanks to the innovative brake system on the Ninebot, you won't have to think for very long because the system works so well.


This model makes use of a dual brake system like so many others in the class. However, the MAX stands apart from its peers because it combines a front drum brake and a rear regenerative electric brake. The pair of brakes are actuated with a single hand lever, which has the advantage of shortening reaction time while promoting stability. We ran tests both on flat ground as well as on descents, and this model impressed the entire test team.

Not the most compact machine, the Ninebot will nonetheless fit into...
Not the most compact machine, the Ninebot will nonetheless fit into the back of an economy car.
Credit: Laura Casner

Portability


It might not be at the forefront of your mind when you are shopping around for a scooter, but eventually, you'll have to carry and store the thing. Most manufacturers take this into account and work to reduce the dimensions and weight of their products. The Ninebot doesn't deliver in this category as it did in the performance-focused metrics. In large part, this is because you pay for performance in weight. All the components that contribute to a faster, more stable scooter add up to a bigger, heavier machine. That said, it's not all bad with the MAX's portability assessment.


This machine has an exceptionally well designed folding mechanism. This is a real weak point in scooter design, and we've had problems with other products. Not so with the Ninebot. The lock securing the hinge is redundant, but can still be operated with one hand. Additionally, the latch that connects the steering column to the rear finder, effectively making it a handle, is a simple and secure spring-loaded clip. Despite being fairly long and wide, this model can be fit into the trunk of an economy car.

Value


We think that the Ninebot MAX is a good value. It doesn't have much competition in the power and braking departments, but the competition it does have makes this machine's hefty price tag look like a bargain. More than that, this machine has aesthetic lines and an intuitive design that's built for heavy use. If you want to put miles on your machine, this little chariot is well worth the investment.

Conclusion


The Ninebot KickScooter MAX is one heck of a machine. This puppy has tons of power and the brakes to bring you to a stop when the unexpected occurs. Its well-designed cockpit has wide bars for better steering, and an LED dashboard display providing pertinent information. The wide pneumatic tires add traction and smooth out the bumps in the road. Most important to the commuter crowd, its lithium-ion battery has an extremely long runtime. All and all, this is one bad machine.

Nick Miley and Austin Palmer