Gear Review: Segway ES4 Scooter
The Segway ES4 was the first electric scooter I have owned. In fact, to be honest, as lifelong skateboarder with a bit of grudge against scooters, I believe this is the first scooter of any kind that I have owned. So why did I get one? Well, after having a blast rallying around both Lime and Bird scooters back on the mainland, I decided while living on Maui during the first half of 2019 that an electric scooter would be a great way to get around the island without having to buy a second vehicle. After doing my research, and a few test drives of other scooters, I decided on the Segway Ninebot ES4 because it had the best range and most power of any folding electric scooter on the market (at the time). I found an open box model on eBay and managed to (very slowly) get it shipped to the island, which is apparently very difficult for something with two huge Lithium batteries (watch the whole scooter shopping experience here).
The ES4 motor has 800 watts of power, which like I already mentioned is one of the most powerful scooters out there anywhere near this price range. The scooter also comes stock with two batteries, one is an external one mounted on the handle bar arm and the other is an internal one mounted underneath the deck of the scooter. The scooter is very similar to the other ES models but the extra external battery is what gives the ES4 the 28 mile range. If you wanted to you could totally disconnect the external battery and just use the internal one, but I don’t really know why you do that unless you really just hated the look of the battery on the bar (which I kinda do, but I kept the battery because I need that range son!) .
As far as riding is concerned, the ES4 max speed is 19 mph when operating it in S (Sport) Mode, but there is an eco or speed limiting mode that gets maximum range, and then a middle or the road “standard” mode that is somewhere between sport and eco. They say that the ES4’s max slope grade is 15-degrees but in reality none of these electric scooters do very well going up to be honest. The tires are airless 8” & 7 1/2” which has the benefit of them never going flat but they are pretty uncomfortable to ride. The brakes are similar to other scooters where use the rear tire to stop mechanically by stepping on the rear fender and the front uses an electrical brake that actual regenerates some power. The scooter itself folds up super nicely, so you can easily toss it in a car, on a bus or bring it into the office. I will say though, at 31 pounds you’re not really going to want to be carrying this thing anywhere far.
Overall the scooter served its purpose for me while living on Maui. I never had an issue with range, and charging was simple and straightforward. I was able to cruise around town and when it was time to meet up with friends I could just fold it up and toss it in the car. In all honesty, I would probably still have the scooter to this day, but when the Segway Nineboy Max was announce I had to sell my ES4 and upgrade. Read my review of that scooter here.