Ninebot Max Review: Highlights
In this Ninebot Max review, we rode the consumer version of the Segway Ninebot Max. The Max is basically a more substantial, stronger, longer-ranged version of the ultra-popular Xiaomi Mi M365.
Overall, the Ninebot Max is a beefier, more-reliable, lower-maintenance, more industrial version of the Xiaomi M365 — the World’s most famous electric scooter.
It offers 28 miles of real-world range in a quality package that is sure to outlast even the best budget scooter. Its larger size gives more deck space and bigger tires that make longer trips more comfortable. The Max isn’t a thrilling racer scooter, but is quick, and is ideal as a reliable commuting machine.
- Great range
- Beefy construction
- Flat resistant tubeless pneumatic self-healing tires
- Comfortable ride
- Lacks zippy acceleration
- Too heavy to be ultra-portable
Who its for
The Ninebot Max is an excellent scooter for those who love the design of the world-class M365 but want a more durable, longer-ranged scooter. The Max’s more powerful motor can propel heavier riders up steeper hills and at a faster clip.
Review of Segway Ninebot Max Performace
The Max is propelled by a 350-watt nominal, 700-watt peak electric motor. This is 40% more power than the standard 250-watt motor found on the original M365.
In our acceleration tests, the Max reached 15 mph in 5.4 seconds, faster than the original M365 (6.3 seconds), and about the same as the M365 Pro (5.3 seconds).
The acceleration control scheme has some quirks:
- The Max doesn’t have zero start mode meaning you must kick start it to about 2 mph. Once rolling, you have to ease on the throttle; otherwise, the motor will not engage — an annoying safety feature. Once the motor is activated, you can go to max throttle with no problems.
- Accelerator is also nonlinear at the top of its range. If you get that last little 5% push, you do get noticeably more speed.
The Ninebot Max has good hill-climbing ability. We were able to maintain 6 to 7 mph on some impressive hills and were only stopped by the steepest ones.
The scooter completed our hill climb test (200 ft, 10% grade, 165 lb rider) in 16 seconds at an average speed of 8.5 mph. The Max climbs about as well as the M365 Pro and is significantly faster than the M365 which maintained an average speed of 6.5 mph.
Starting on a slope, due to the required kick to start, will cause some smaller riders issues. You need to get the scooter to 2-3 mph before the throttle kicks in. On a decently steep hill, we had to make multiple attempts to get enough speed for the throttle to engage.
We tested the top speed of the Ninbot Max and got 17.9 mph. When the battery drops below 50%, the top speed is reduced to about 16 mph.
For commuting in a city, these speeds are relatively quick and about as much as you’ll need.
Though many may expect a 40 lb scooter to have a higher top speed, this is likely a controller/software limitation designed to maximize the range of the scooter.
The Ninebot Max has a manufacturer-claimed range of 40 miles (64 km); however, we got 28.1 miles during our range test. The range test simulates real-world conditions (165 lb rider, frequent stops, top speed when safe, numerous hills).
This range is among the best given the scooter’s price range and weight.
The Max has a front drum brake and rear electronic brake. This makes the braking system robust and provides redundancy in the case that one system fails.
During our 15 mph braking test, the Max took a respectable 17.2 feet to come to a halt. This is by no means record-setting, but about as good as the original M365 (16.8 ft) and M365 Pro (15.3 ft).
One thing we really like about the drum brake is that it is zero maintenance. The braking mechanism is completed encased within the wheel — protecting it from the environment or incidental damage.
Because the brake cable is short and routed relatively straight, braking feels smooth and doesn’t require much effort. On the model we received, we had to adjust a tensioning screw on the front drum brake. Overall, the Ninebot Max’s brakes provide abundant stopping power when braking with maximum force.
One concern that has been expressed about the Max is locating the drum brake on the front wheel. Some have wondered if braking can result in toppling over the front wheel. During our testing, we didn’t notice this — even when braking maximally. However, when braking, we strongly recommend that you crouch and shift your weight toward the rear tire for more stability.
Despite its lack of suspension, its large 10-inch tires and sturdy frame give it a better ride than many scooters with a full suspension. On the worst roads, you’ll undoubtedly get rattled a bit, but the Max does well on most terrains.
The whole package — with its larger deck, thicker stem, and beefier build make the Ninebot Max feel more like a legitimate commuting machine than a novelty.
Its more sturdy frame and slower motor make it feel less nimble; this is not the scooter you’ll be carving around on.
However, all those things said — the Max is the type of ride that is good as a daily commuter with enough comfort and deck space for going longer distances.
Segway Ninebot Max Feature Review
At 42 lbs, the scooter is a bit heavy, although still manageable. In our experience, 45 lbs (20 kg) is the limit for a scooter to be truly portable.
The Ninebot Max has folded dimensions of 46-inch x 19-inch x 21-inch. Though it is on the bigger size, it should fit into most trunks though you may have to slide the scooter in on an angle. We tested it on a Honda Accord, which has a large trunk and had no problems.
Stem folding mechanism
The Max has a folding stem with a latch that is slightly different from the M365, though it functions in a very similar way. It has a safety collar that rotates to lock the folding lever into place. When unfolded, there is absolutely zero play in the stem. The folding mechanism is ultra-solid.
The Max has a great cockpit.
Central to it is a bright LED display that shows basic information: speed, battery, mode, etc. It is bright enough to see in sunlight and dims at night (when front lights are on) to prevent blinding you. A single button controls lights, mode, and power.
Overall, all the adornments on the handlebars — display, accelerator, brake lever, and grips look and feel high-quality.
The handlebar grips are thick and textured. There is a twist-style bell that is loud enough to alert pedestrians but not cars. The thumb throttle has smooth mechanical has a grippy rubber pad. The brake lever is solid without any play or excess friction.
The Ninebot Max has a high-mounted front LED light. It also has a small rear red LED brake light. Good optics.
The lights are sufficient for providing some visibility, but if you’re regularly riding at night, see our guide on additional lights to improve visibility.
The Ninebot Max has 10-inch tubeless pneumatic tires that function well at damping road vibrations and rolling over obstacles and potholes that could send you to the ground.
Segway has marketed the tires as “self-healing” which isn’t some fancy technology — it just means that the tires come pre-filled with tire slime. This is a nice addition that we hope becomes standard. It should make the tires more resistant to flats.
The Max’s deck is quite nice. It has a grippy rubber surface and 20-inches by 7-inches of usable deck space.
This makes it spacious enough for a variety of comfortable riding positions, and most will be able to stand with their feet in line.
Overall, build quality is excellent. The scooter is heavier and feels more like a serious commuting machine than a toy like some scooters.
The frame of the Ninebot 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. This should make it an especially durable scooter for personal use.
The Ninebot Max has an IPX5 water-resistance rating meaning that it can tolerate splashes but not full submersion. Practically-speaking, this means that the Max can be ridden home if you get caught in the rain. Though we don’t recommend riding in the rain, the Max’s pneumatic tires perform surprisingly well on wet roads.
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.
The Max is good for consumers willing to take greater weight and size for a longer-ranged scooter that is designed for minimal maintenance and longevity.
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||17 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|