Tom's Guide Verdict
Beefy tires and a powerful motor make the Segway Ninebot Kickscooter Max an excellent electric scooter.
Loud, easy to use bell
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Size (unfolded): 45.9 x 18.6 x 47.4 in
Size (folded): 45.9 x 18.6 x 21.0 in
Weight: 41.2 pounds
Wheel size/type: 10-inch, inflatable
Range: 40 miles
Battery: 42V, 2.9 A
Max speed: 18.6 mph
Max rider weight: 220 pounds
Motor: One 350W
Charging time: 6 hours
Segway pretty much launched the electric scooter market with its personal transporter, and while that device didn’t exactly take off, the company has had more success with less-futuristic devices. The Segway Ninebot Kickscooter Max doesn’t look like something out of a sci-fi movie, but what it lacks in style, it makes up for in performance. It’s one of the best electric scooters for those who want a long and comfortable ride. Check out the rest of our Segway Ninebot Kickscooter Max review to see what else we liked about this massive electric scooter.
Segway Ninebot Kickscooter Max: Design
Outside of models with full suspension, the Ninebot Kickscooter Max is one of the beefiest electric scooters around. It has nice, large 10-inch inflatable tires, a thick downtube, and a large, rubber-clad deck with a massive battery underneath. It’s a stark contrast to the svelte Unagi Model One; side by side, it’s like looking at a Miata next to a Hummer.
The one downside is that the Kickscooter Max weighs a hefty 41.2 pounds, nearly 15 pounds more than the Unagi Model One. That makes the Max a lot less portable, especially if you’re looking to carry it on a bus, subway, or up a flight of stairs.
One of the things I liked the most about the Kickscooter Max was its bell. Most electric scooters I’ve tested treat this safety feature as an afterthought, strapping on a dinky little ringer. The Kickscooter Max’s bell, though, is big and loud. And, instead of having to shift your thumb to ring it, the Kickscooter’s bell is built into the left handlebar, so all you have to do is twist your wrist.
The Kickscooter Max has a bright color LED display; while not as large as that on the Unagi, it still conveyed all the information I needed at a glance.
I also liked the bright headlight and taillight on the Max; as with the Unagi, the Max’s taillight flashes when you hit the brakes, making you more visible to cars.
It has an IPX-5 rating for water resistance, so you could ride it through a rainstorm. You’d be miserable, but the scooter would survive.
Segway Ninebot Kickscooter Max: Setup and app
The Max ships with its handlebars detached, but connecting them is a simple matter of using the included Allen wrench to screw in six bolts. If you've ever assembled IKEA furniture, this should be no problem.
However, there is one extra step before you can take the Kickscooter Max out for a ride: You have to download the Segway-Ninebot app to your smartphone (Android and iOS), link the scooter to the app via Bluetooth, and then register the scooter with your email address. You can then use the app as a dashboard (if you want a smartphone mount, that’s $30 extra) and see additional stats, such as distance traveled and battery life remaining. Since the scooter itself has a readout, I almost never used the app.
Segway Ninebot Kickscooter Max: Performance
Cruising around my neighborhood, I was pleased with the smooth ride offered by the Kickscooter Max’s 10-inch tires. Despite the lack of shock absorbers, it took on potholes and sidewalk cracks like a champ.
Where the Unagi I rode has dual 250-watt motors, the Max has a single 350-watt motor in its rear wheel; nevertheless, the Max was able to power me up steep inclines nearly as easily as the Unagi. Segway claims the Max can handle 20-degree inclines, and I believe it. On one incline that caused other, less powerful scooters to slow down to 5-6 miles per hour or less, the Kickscooter Max was able to maintain a speed of around 9-10 mph. The Unagi, which has dual 250-watt motors, did a bit better, averaging around 14 mph.
Segway Ninebot Kickscooter Max: Verdict
While not as elegant in design as the Unagi Model One, the Segway Ninebot Kickscooter Max is still one of the best electric scooters because it delivers a lot of performance at a reasonable price. For $800 — nearly $200 less than the Unagi — the Kickscooter Max gets you around just as fast and just as smoothly, over longer distances.
Michael A. Prospero is the U.S. Editor-in-Chief for Tom’s Guide. He oversees all evergreen content and oversees the Homes, Smart Home, and Fitness/Wearables categories for the site. In his spare time, he also tests out the latest drones, electric scooters, and smart home gadgets, such as video doorbells. Before his tenure at Tom's Guide, he was the Reviews Editor for Laptop Magazine, a reporter at Fast Company, the Times of Trenton, and, many eons back, an intern at George magazine. He received his undergraduate degree from Boston College, where he worked on the campus newspaper The Heights, and then attended the Columbia University school of Journalism. When he’s not testing out the latest running watch, electric scooter, or skiing or training for a marathon, he’s probably using the latest sous vide machine, smoker, or pizza oven, to the delight — or chagrin — of his family.