In this Ninebot Max review, we test rode a scooter-sharing version of the Ninebot Max, which should be very similar to the consumer version. Our review finds that the Ninebot Max is basically a beefed-up scooter with Xiaomi Mi M365 roots.
Ninebot Max Review: Highlights
Overall, this is the younger, bigger brother to the Xiaomi M365. You may be aware that Xiaomi bought Segway which means all Xiaomi and Segway products are basically now the same company. It is heavier, with a bigger battery, much larger tires, and a drum brakes. All of this works well and this scooter will definitely hold up better than the smaller Xiaomi, but it is just a bit less fun.
Segway Ninebot Max Video Review
Review of Segway Ninebot Max Performace
The Max is propelled by a 350 watt nominal, 700 watt max motor. This is 40% more power than a standard 250 watt motor.
Despite the more souped-up motor, acceleration isn’t noticeably faster than a standard 250 watt motor scooter. This is likely due to controller and software that are trying to maximize range and prolong battery life.
The acceleration control scheme for the Max has the same quirks as the M365. By that, we mean a few things:
- You cannot push to start then give it max throttle. It is finicky. You have to get a little speed then just ease on the throttle. This can be a more tricky procedure than on hills and especially steep hills.
- Accelerator is also touchy right at the top of its range. If you get that last little 5% push, you do get noticeably more speed.
However, the more powerful motor does allow the scooter to excel in one area very important to some riders — hill climbing ability.
Starting on uphill, due to required kick to start, will cause some smaller riders issues. You need to get the scooter to 2-3 mph before the throttle will kick in. I had to try 2-3 times to get enough speed going to get it to engage on a decently steep uphill.
The Ninebot Max is able to maintain 6-7 mph on some VERY steep hills and it was only the steepest of hills that we had to get off the scooter and walk it.
Top speed of the Segway Max is ~15 mph (24 kmh). This is a little slow for a 40+ lb scooter that has a 350 Wh electric motor. Most consumers spending more than $600 on an electric scooter will expect something a bit faster.
However, this is likely a controller/software limitation designed to maximize battery life / range.
The Ninebot Max has a manufacturer-quoted range of 40 miles (64 km), which would be best in class for a scooter of this weight.
We would expect to get something closer to 20-25 miles of real-world range, based on our electric scooter consumer range data and our own personal testing data.
Here’s a quick way we arrive at that estimate: the M365 has a 280 watt hour battery and gets 14.6 miles of real-world range. The Max has a 551 watt hour battery (about 2X) so you could expect almost 30 miles of range. However, the Ninebot Max also has a more powerful 350 watt motor that will gobble up energy faster.
We’ll update our real-world range data tables once we’ve completed the tests.
The Max has a front drum brake and rear electronic brake. This makes the braking system both robust and provides redundancy in the case that one system fails.
The drum brake is high-quality and allows the scooter to be more maintenance-friendly as the braking mechanism is completed encased within the wheel — protecting it from the environment or incidental damage.
Note: you can learn more about drum brakes (and other types) in our complete guide to electric scooter brakes.
Because the brake cable routing is fairly straight and the distance is short, braking is very linear and smooth. It doesn’t take much effort to brake.
Overall, the Ninebot Max’s brakes provide good stopping power and you can lock up the front wheel when braking with maximum force.
Segway Ninebot Max Feature Review
Scooter is a bit heavy at 42 lbs, although still manageable. In our experience, 45 lbs (20 kg) is the limit for a scooter to be truly “portable.”
Compared to the Segway Ninebot ES2, which we had a harder time fitting into a trunk, the Ninebot Max is actually quite a bit larger when folded. The Max is: 46 x 19 x 21 in vs the ES2, which is: 45 x 17 x 16 in.
The only dimension I’m concerned about is the length as it is almost an inch longer than the ES2 and the ES2 was the only scooter I’ve had an issue getting into a trunk. One of the hallmarks of a personal scooter is you can do things like put it in a trunk, hide under a table, etc.
Stem folding mechanism
The version we tested didn’t have the folding mechanism that comes on the consumer-version of the Max.
However, others have reported that the folding mechanism for the Ninebot Max is good and mechanically similar to that on the Xiaomi Mi M365.
Bell is a twist style on left side. When turning it you cannot also have your hand on the brake lever. So if you are in an emergency you need to choose one.
Simple design for on/off, lights and riding modes. Press one button once to turn on/off lights. Double click to switch between riding modes. This seems to be the standard now on many scooters.
The thumb throttle feels high quality and has a grippy rubber pad.
The display is bright enough to see in full sunlight and
Handlebar grips are wonderful, tacky, and don’t slip.
Front light is mounted high. Rear light is a bit small and does blink when pressing brakes.
The Ninebot Max has 10″ pneumatic tires that are amazing at taking much of the vibrations out of the road.
Additionally, the tires come pre-filled with tire slime which should make them more resistant to getting flats.
Overall build quality is excellent, though this is based on a day of riding the scooter and not longer terms tests that we’ve been able to do with other scooters.
The frame of the Ninebogt Max is very nearly identical to the Xiaomi M365, but supersized, making it more durable. Segway Ninebot has said that this scooter was designed specifically for the sharing market in mind.
Scooter also has DC converter built in with a standard IEC 320 C5 “Mickey Mouse ears” power connector, with an added port if it fails so you can use a charger or plug in directly to the wall.
This is cool because you don’t need to take a power-brick around with you, you can use relatively cheap and lightweight standard power cable for charging.
Segway Max Review: Final Thoughts
Despite the name, the Ninebot Max does not have its roots in any of the scooters previously marketed as Segway Ninebot (e.g. ES1, ES2, ES4).
The Segway Ninebot Max is, in fact, a beefed-up version of the world’s most popular scooter — the Xiaomi Mi M365. It offers greater range, a bit better hill climbing ability, and larger 10″ diameter pneumatic tires that have been pre-slimed for maximum flat resistance.
We haven’t been able to do our complete and thorough testing on a consumer version of this scooter so we can’t recommend it yet. However, suffice it to say that the Max does look promising and has a use case for consumers willing to trade off greater weight and size for a longer-ranged scooter.
One thing we were disappointed by is the lack of greater top speed and acceleration. For a scooter of this size and weight, we expect something a bit punchier and funner to ride like the Mercane WideWheel. Let’s hope the consumer version has a bit less conservative controller.
Segway Ninebot Max Technical Specifications
|Weight||42 lb||13 kg|
|Folded dimensions||46″ x 19″ x 21″||117 x 48 x 53 cm|
|Motor power, continuous:||350 watts|
|Top speed||~16 mph||25 kmh|
|Range||40 mi||64 km|
|Battery capacity||551 Wh|
|Battery recharge time||6 hours|
|Max rider weight||220 lb||100 kg|
|Brake type (front / rear)||Drum||Electronic|
|Tire type (front / rear)||Dual 10″ Pneumatic|
|Built-in lights (front / rear)||Yes||Yes|