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Reviews of my favourite travel gadgets

I really like the design of Xiaomi M365 scooter – no wonder they were awarded with a “Red Dot Design Award”. But when I first saw the Unagi I was blown away by the slick design, to me the best looking e.scooter so far! Well, the design is nice to look at, but how does it perform? There are two versions available Unagi E250 single motor and Unagi E450 dual motor. Similar to Boosted Rev the Unagi E450 is powered on each front and back-wheel, but Unagi is a lot cheaper. So lets take a closer look at the specs:

 

Unagi Scooter vs Xiaomi Scooter Pro vs Ninebot MAX

* manufacturer’s data
Xiaomi Pro data is calculated as follows: 15km/h speed, 75kg driver, flat road, 25°C temperature.
Ninebot MAX data is calculated as follows: 15 km/h speed, 75kg driver, average pavement, 25°C temperature.

 

Frame

As already mentioned, the design of Unagi Scooters is stunning and the materials used are superb. The tube is made of carbon fibre to strike an unprecedented balance of lightweight and heavy-duty strength. No wonder that Unagi E450 is more than 3kg lighter than Xiaomi Scooter Pro. The deck is a single piece of machined aluminum with embedded silicon on the top surface for traction. Similar to Xiaomi Pro and Ninebot MAX the footstep holds the battery. I prefer this construction over the battery placement within the tube (e.g. Ninebot ES2) as a lower center of gravity can be achieved which benefits driving experience. All of them are designed to carry a rider with a max. of 100kg. Likewise they all have a foldout stand integrated to conveniently park the scooter. But again with Unagi you can experience the extra effort they put in designing the scooter – their “ruthless obsession with detail” as they call it. Unagi seamlessly integrated the stand and as a result the stand is sturdy and simple; practically invisible when riding. What’s more Unagi is the only e-scooter among them with color options: both Unagi models are available in Cosmic Blue, Gotham Grey, Sea Salt White and Matte Black. Three separate coats are applied, including a laminate and a high-abrasion resistant paint to handle the wear and tear of the road. As the scooter is made of aluminum and carbon fibre it also never rusts.

Unagi Scooter (E450 Dual Motor) Review - Frame Design

Unagi Scooter (E450 Dual Motor) – Frame Design

 

Motor, Motors actually

When ordering Unagi Model One you have two options: Unagi E250 contains a 250 watt motor, embedded in the front wheel. Unagi E450 has 225 watt motor in each wheel, supplying 450 watts in total and over 28 newton meters of torque. Max. speed is 25 km/h and it easily tackles hills with 15-degree inclines. That’s about the same as you can get on a Ninebot MAX or Xiaomi Pro. Xiaomi Pro even states 20% gradient, but according to my tests that’s overstated.

Battery & Range

The announced range for Unagi E450 is 25km. That’s not much compared to Ninebot MAX or Xiaomi Pro (45km). But they stated that this range can be achieved with a 75kg rider, driving 15 km/h on a flat road. So when I go with my Xiaomi Pro with full speed I achieve about 30km. Currently I don’t know how Unagi is calculating range (hopefully with full speed) but I will test that soon. There’s another item that has to be considered in relation to range – the battery and weight. Unagi is by far the lightest scooter among them (3,2kg lighter than Xiaomi Pro; 7,7kg lighter than Ninebot MAX). Consider that if you use your scooter in combination with public transport!
Unagi is relying on high quality batteries from LG and Unagi promises “they will last for many years with continuous daily use”. The battery can be easily replaced.

LEDs & Display

The Display of Unagi E450 Scooter shows current mode, actual speed and battery status, same as all the other scooters. But it also shows mileage, I was missing that on Xiaomi and Ninebot. Unagi Scooters feature a 47 lumen LED front light and a rear blinking red LED.

Unagi Scooter E450 dual motor review - Display & LED Light

Unagi Scooter (E450 – dual motor) – Display & LED Light

 

Tires

E-Scooters rely on different solutions when it comes to tires and suspension. Ninebot ES series features solid rubber tires with suspension (ES1 just on front, ES2 on both wheels). I thought that gives good shock absorption but after testing I prefer the 8,5″ tube air tires of my Xiaomi Pro. Even considering the fact that Xiaomi doesn’t offer any other form of suspension. For their latest model MAX, Ninebot switched to 10″ tubeless air tires. While air tires offer great shock absorption they of course have a huge disadvantage: they can puncture or deflate, leaving you with a flat tire. (That happened on my Xiaomi as well). Unagi tackles both issues with 7.5″ honey-comb tires. On one hand they are solid rubber and puncture proof, on the other hand the air pockets of the honeycomb design provide shock absorption on front and rear wheel. I’m very much looking forward to test the result.

Brakes

Unagi E450 uses an electronic brake that is controlled via a lever on the handle. I prefer this method since the main brake is a regenerative braking system as the generated energy during braking flows right back into the battery. Since Unagi E450 has dual motors, both wheels make use of the electric brake. Both Unagi’s accelerator and brake levers are built with variable controls, so pushing down further increases their action. Unagi states that almost every other scooter tested is binary in their action – either all on or all off. Also other scooters use a mechanical brake as their main brake: Xiaomi Pro uses a disc brake while Ninebot MAX uses a drum brake. They only use the electric brake as secondary brake, which can’t be influenced during the ride and only be preset. Ninebot ES series scooters was equipped with electric brake and lever, I don’t know why Ninebot moved away from that system.

Unagi E450 review - tires & brake lever

Unagi E450 – tires & brake lever

 

Unagi Scooter – in a nutshell

This is just my impression after going through the specs of Unagi Scooter (E450 Dual Motor). This article will be updated as soon as I had the chance to ride Unagi Scooter:

Unagi Scooter E450 (dual motor version)

awesome design

very light (carbon & aluminum frame)

dual motor – better acceleration

dual motor – better electric brakes

range

 

Retailer & Price

You can get Ungai E450 and Unagi E250 scooter via their webshop. Shipping is free in US and EU!

When purchasing you have a 30 days “no questions asked” no-risk return policy. That means you have a 30 day period to return the scooter for any reason, even if it has been ridden.

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