Personal mobility devices

A heavy ride with a price to match

The Mobot Knight has no pedal power, relying solely on electrical energy.
The Mobot Knight has no pedal power, relying solely on electrical energy. PHOTO: MOBOT

The Mobot Knight is a fancy-looking mash-up between an electric scooter and a bicycle, packed full of features such as a waterproof Bluetooth speaker, USB charging and a remote control key.

While the Knight is definitely a head-turner, and more comfortable and stable than a regular electric scooter, it is also quite pricey at $1,999. It is also not as portable, as it weighs in at a hefty 18kg.

At first glance, the Knight looks like a bicycle, with a seat, handlebars and footrests. However, these rests cannot be pedalled to power the scooter, and it relies entirely on electrical power.

It can go between 35km and 45km on a single charge, and at speeds of up to 25kmh. While it is not the quickest scooter around, that speed is more than enough for getting around.

The Knight's seat is well-padded, and much more comfortable than standing up on a normal electric scooter over long distances. For someone with a lower centre of gravity, it also feels a lot more stable, even at higher speeds.

  • TECH SPECS

  • PRICE: $1,999

    BATTERY: 36V, 8.8Ah Li-ion

    MAXIMUM LOAD: 120kg

    TOP SPEED: 25kmh

    RANGE: 35 - 45km

    WEIGHT: 18kg


    RATING

    FEATURES: 5/5

    DESIGN: 5/5

    PERFORMANCE: 4/5

    BATTERY LIFE: 4/5

    VALUE FOR MONEY: 4/5

    OVERALL: 4/5

However, because the handlebars are quite low, you will have to lean forward quite a bit when you ride, almost as if you are on a road bike. While this felt all right for me, I can imagine how it may become uncomfortable over long periods.

Because of the Knight's weight and size, it also feels a lot less agile than a regular electric scooter, and less nimble negotiating corners.

The Knight is foldable, and the footrests can also be tucked in. However, it is still about the size of a golf bag, and a little too bulky to manoeuvre around easily.

While the Knight is an enjoyable ride, what really makes it stand out are its features.

It has an inbuilt Bluetooth speaker, so you can listen to music on the go. I found that the speakers were loud enough to hear, even when I was moving around in crowded places, although the sounds were not the clearest.

What I also found very useful was the fact that the Knight has a USB port for you to charge your smartphone or other devices. This is particularly handy if you are draining your phone's battery by playing music, using GPS or playing something like Pokemon Go.

Finally, you can operate the Knight with a remote control, which looks similar to a car's remote control. You can lock it remotely to prevent it from being turned on and driven away, so you can leave it outside the supermarket or cafe without having to worry.

Lisabel Ting

• Verdict: The Mobot Knight is a comfortable, feature-packed cross between an electric scooter and a bicycle. However, taller users may find the bent-over riding posture a little uncomfortable.

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 28, 2016, with the headline 'A heavy ride with a price to match'. Print Edition | Subscribe