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Indi EX-2 review: What do you get for the money?
Aside from the low price of £389, it’s the “Neo-Chrome” finish of Indi EX-2’s frame that really catches the eye. Its iridescent coloring looks great and the broad, shaped plywood-and-griptape deck tops it off nicely, lending it a look that’s more reminiscent of a traditional, human-powered scooter or skateboard than the homogenous blocky, boring the look of most rivals. It’s also available in black but why opt for that when this model looks so great?
The Indi EX-2 is as practical as it is attractive. That deck is nice and wide at 19cm and it’s long, too, at 40cm making it easy to find a comfortable riding position. Although the plywood material means it isn’t as robust as scooters with metal and rubber platforms it’s worth noting that the deck easily unscrews for replacement so any accidental damage shouldn’t be a big issue.
The rest of the scooter’s configuration is much more standard. Underneath the deck is a 280Wh battery, which delivers a claimed maximum range of 18 miles – exactly what you’d expect of a budget e-scooter – and the motor is a basic 350W unit built into the rear wheel. Stopping is taken care of by a front drum brake with cable adjustment and a rear electronic brake, both neatly controlled from the same single brake lever. All cable runs are nicely integrated into the frame tubing or hidden away neatly.
The scooter’s folding stem drops down, securing onto the rear mudguard, making an easily transportable package of 44 x 108 x 47.5cm (WDH). The handlebars don’t fold or unscrew, making it a bit more unwieldy in its folded state than many rivals. However, on the plus side, it is very light at 14.7kg.
The real downside in terms of portability is that the handlebar catch uses the sprung rear mudguard to hold it in place and, if you’re not careful, this can be knocked out and the package can unfold unexpectedly. That’s not a huge deal if you are aware of it but a more secure catch design would definitely be preferable.
There are other elements of the design that I’m not too keen on, as well. The folding hinge, for instance, is secure enough but there is a little flex in the steering post post once it’s locked in place. Allied with the rider weight rating of 100kg, this means it’s perhaps a model more for smaller, lighter riders and for leisure use. Heavier users who are looking for a daily commuter might want to look elsewhere: for example, the sturdy TurboAnt X7 Pro (£463).
Another signal that the Indi EX-2 is intended for a lighter workload is that it has 8.5in pneumatic tires front and rear instead of the larger 10in we’re seeing on pricer models. These don’t have any mitigation against punctures, either, which is a tad disappointing when other models ship with puncture resistant or non-pneumatic puncture proof wheels.
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Indi EX-2 review: How does it ride?
Despite the relatively small 8.5in tires, comfort is a major plus point on the Indi EX-2. That lovely wide standing area certainly helps but I found the 8.5in tires rolled well, even on bumpier surfaces such as moderately potholed roads, as long as I dropped my speed and put my weight back on the scooter.
The scooter’s large central LCD display is readable, even in bright sunlight, and shows your speed up to the maximum 15mph assist limit, which the Indi EX-2 achieves pretty rapidly on a flat, smooth surface. There are three riding modes: 6mph, 10mph and 15mph and I toggled straight up to the max for our range testing. Once you’ve got used to the way an e-scooter feels to ride, this is the mode you’ll likely use most of the time.
I achieved a range of 10 miles on my newly designed test course; While this doesn’t sound a lot compared to the ‘typical’ range of 13 miles and the maximum of 18 miles claimed by Indi, I should point out my test course is quite hilly and involves a couple of lengthy, smooth off road sections. With that in mind, I can see a lighter rider achieving 18 miles on a decent tarmac surface with not too many hills, as long as they drop down to lower speeds when conditions dictate that.
Hill climbing is on a par with most other budget e-scooters I have tried: it has good speed up very moderate hills, slower rates on steeper ones and it comes to a halt on demanding gradients. In other words, its hill climbing ability is entirely par for the course and certainly not as bad as some e-scooters I have tried.
When it is moving, the tires feel safe and grippy, probably due to their nice wide profile, and the dual braking system is sharp but effective. The electronic rear brake doesn’t have a great deal of modulation, it feels either on or off, but the front drum brake gives plenty of control; the key is gentle use of the lever.
The LED lights are fairly budget ones but the front one is adequate for riding on unlit roads and paths.
Indi EX-2 review: Should you buy one?
If price is important in your search for an e-scooter then the Indi EX-2 is a definite contender. Indeed, if you prefer to buy in-store instead of online, then there’s not an awful lot of competition for it at all.
My only real wishlist additions would be a stronger steering stem, which puts it out of contention for larger riders looking for a scooter they can use for regular, long distance commuting.
Otherwise, the Indi EX-2 is a decent all-rounder with a comfortable ride and excellent braking. It’s certainly one to put on the budget e-scooter hunter’s list.
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E-scooter use in the UK
Despite the fact that they’re now a common sight in UK cities, you should be aware that private electric scooters are currently classified as “personal light electric vehicles” in the UK, which means that you’re only legally allowed to use them on private land with the landowner’s permission. If you’re caught riding one on roads or pavements, you could be fined and receive six points on your driving license. This may soon change, however, with the UK Government setting out plans to expand the legal use of e-scooters in the Queen’s Speech on 10 May 2022. The only way you can currently ride an e-scooter legally in the UK is to rent one via one of the legal pilot schemes operating in some cities.