In recent years, Segway Ninebot is becoming better-known for things like its C30 and C80 eMopeds, as well as the Segway Dirt eBike. Still, even as you push forward and evolve into something new, sometimes it’s important to remember where you came from. At least, we think that might be Segway’s reasoning with the Ninebot S Max.
What’s funniest about this device is, in fact, its name. For people of a certain age, just saying the name “Segway” automatically makes you conjure up a mental image of a silly, slow-moving hoverboard-thing with a big handle sticking up for a rider to grab. To ride it, you stand on the hoverboard part between two wheels, and you use the handlebar both to keep yourself upright as you glide along, as well as to steer.
Despite this instant brand recognition, for some reason, Ninebot opted not to append the name “Segway” to the Ninebot S Max. Yes, even though this new creation is essentially the modern evolution of the classic Segway vehicle concept. It is apparently “powered by Segway,” but that seems a bit more complicated an inclusion of a very simple term than is strictly necessary, doesn’t it?
Anyway, as seems to be Ninebot’s business model for new releases, it’s currently crowdfunding a build campaign over on Indiegogo that is 2,272 percent funded at the time of writing. It sought to raise just $5,000, but has so far raised an astounding $113,623 from backers, with 30 days left in the campaign.
Priced at just $849, claimed specs include a light weight of 50.2 pounds, a top speed of 12 mph, an average range of 23.6 miles, and charge time of about four hours. Max battery power is 4800W, and battery capacity is rated at 432Wh. There’s also a knee control mode, which is a common feature on other S series options from Ninebot. Two hub motors keep you moving in the direction you want to go.
If that’s not enough excitement, the company also advises that you can combine it with your Ninebot Gokart kit. This will jack your available top speed up to an astonishing 23mph when you’re seated behind the Gokart’s steering wheel. According to Ninebot, that’ll save you $301 over purchasing the Gokart PRO, which gets you the same power.
Gallery: Segway Ninebot S Max
What about safety? The campaign includes the following line.
“Designed for your safety, the MAX engine automatically stops when detecting unusual movements such as lifting or falling.”
Hey, if your S MAX can’t accidentally run you over if you fall off, I’d call that a win. Right? Right. Expect to see these popping up in warehouses, public parks, museums, and shopping malls (surviving ones, anyway) in the not-too-distant future.