ON TEST: YOUR BATTERYPOWERED COM­MUTE

These will add a bit of fun to the week­day grind…

Focus-Science and Technology - - INNOVATIONS -

SEG­WAY NINEBOT KICKSCOOTER ES2

It’s hard to say ex­actly why, but there’s just some­thing hor­ri­bly con­spic­u­ous about a grown man on an elec­tric scooter. Even in Bris­tol, where we’ve seen peo­ple go­ing to work on uni­cy­cles and penny-far­things. But if you can put your van­ity to one side, the Ninebot by Seg­way is ac­tu­ally a fine way to get around.

The mo­tor kicks in af­ter a push and man­ages a rea­son­able top speed of 25km/h (15.5mph). Large wheels and shock ab­sorbers help the Ninebot skip over most sur­faces, and the LED head­light makes it vis­i­ble enough to ride at night. It’s a brilliant piece of kit, al­beit one that’s per­haps, like other Seg­ways be­fore it, just a lit­tle ahead of its time.

From £549, seg­way.com

BROMPTON ELEC­TRIC

The de­sign­ers of the new Brompton Elec­tric have re­tained the clas­sic Brompton ge­om­e­try here, but added a mo­tor to the front hub and a bat­tery pack over the front wheel. That bat­tery pack tips the scales at 2.9kg and needs to be re­moved when you’re car­ry­ing the bike – even with­out it, the bike weighs 13.4kg.

Still, the Brompton is a lot of fun. When ac­cel­er­at­ing, the mo­tor kicked in with gusto, send­ing us fly­ing along the flat with very lit­tle ef­fort. On hills, the ini­tial ac­cel­er­a­tion was great, but it wasn’t as pow­er­ful as we’d have liked on longer climbs. That said, the bike still folds and stores eas­ily, so if your com­mute mixes in trains or buses, it’s a great op­tion.

From £2,595, brompton.com

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