As soon as the Xiaomi M365 electric scooter went on sale in Ireland, I kind of knew I’d be buying one. Last week, I finally acted and bought one. I’m going to do a much more in-depth review now that I’m using it every day but after a few spins so far, I just want to let you know what my first impressions are.
Are Electric Scooters Legal in Ireland?
Electric scooters which require human power to get them started, like the Xiaomi M365 does, are not classified as mechanically propelled vehicles. As a result, they are perfectly legal to use just like a bicycle and do not require tax or insurance. You can read more about electric scooters and the law in Ireland by reading my other article.
Things I Love About the Xiaomi M365
To get the ball rolling, I’m going to talk about why I love the Xiaomi M365 electric scooter.
I’m Not Clammy Arriving in Work
A very practical one to start. Kicking off your day with a 35-minute walk to the office means you start your day feeling a little clammy. Don’t get me wrong – I appreciate the walk and know that it’s keeping me healthy, but it’s not nice to sit in the office after that walk feeling meh. Using an electric scooter means you stroll into the office, fresh as a daisy. For me, I also arrive with a smile on my face. Which brings me to my next point.
Just finished my first night #scootcommute – interesting. Much harder to see bumps and they are not your friend. The #M365 is better lit up at the front than most bikes. Read is only ok but I might have a solution for that. Also got a neat app..see pic 2. Relays scooter info to my watch. Yeah! Nerdgasm! #plev @xiaomi.global #ev
It’s. So. Much. Fun!
It’s Monday morning. The weekend is over. You have to go to work. While I’m sure the novelty could wear off, right now I look forward to jumping on my scooter and zipping my way to the office. There’s just something very fun about the Xiaomi scooter. It’s not rip-roaringly fast and I definitely don’t think it’s any kind of cool. But all of that doesn’t stop it putting a smile on my face.
While it’s no Tesla…
…the Xiaomi scooter can zip along comfortably at 25kmph. Because you can also use bike lanes, you can slice your way through a busy city like Dublin without much hassle. The scooter has the added benefit of being super easy to hop on and off of, so if you rock up to a red light, it’s really easy to jump off and stroll across a street as a pedestrian before jumping back on again.
With the Xiaomi M365, I’ve turned a 35-minute walk into a 13-minute scoot. My goal is to get sub-ten minutes.
It’s So Simple
While I’m quick to point out the M365 is far from a toy and requires a lot of concentration to take a spin on, the beauty of it all is its simplicity. I’ll come onto this in a second, but maybe the lack of a display is a good thing?
You jump on the scooter, give it two quick pushes, lash the throttle down and you’re flying along. It’s really comfy to stand on, more comfy than sitting on any bike seat and doesn’t take a genius to operate – I can attest to that.
It Makes Dublin Very Small
I live in Dublin City Center and I have a car. The car is great for when you need to collection someone from the airport or if you want to fly out to somewhere like Liffey Valley and do a spot of shopping. But inner-city public transport is only ok. For example, if I wanted to walk to the office, it takes me 35 minutes. To get the Luas, it also takes 35 minutes, depending on how long I have to wait for a tram to come along.
Having my own scooter negates this all together and opens up other parts of the city which aren’t connected with public transport at all. I know many people will read that and be like – “walk you lazy bastard”, but having a scooter just changes your mentality to nipping across town.
It’s Not Really A Heard Turner
I guess this isn’t going to be a positive for some people, but the Xiaomi M365, I think, is the most popular electric mode of personal transport in Dublin. I pass another scooter nearly every day if not two or three. After just a few days, I’ve noticed people say “there’s that scooter I was on about”. That’s the most common thing I overhear.
Electric scooters are almost commonplace already. Most people still haven’t tried one though, so if you do want to grab the attention of your friends, offer them a shot.
Noone will turn it down.
Thinks I Dislike About the Xiaomi M365
As much as I adore the Xiaomi M365 and, dare I say it’s my favourite gadget purchase in a long long time, there are a few frustrations I can’t ignore.
Telling people where you’re going is so important when you travel. Regardless of whether you’re a cyclist or a motorist, indicators and hand signals are crucial. I’ve noticed that hand signals are bloody hard to nail when you’re on this scooter. I’d imagine it’s like this on all scooters. Right turns have the added difficulty of you needing to take your right hand off the throttle.
I’m looking into a few solutions to this problem, from testing out the onboard cruise control to a helmet with indicators built in. There’s no shortage of Xiaomi M365 accessories out there, so watch this space as I make my way through the best.
It’s a Bumpy Ride
The M365 doesn’t offer any kind of suspension or shock absorbers. What you hit, you feel. In the dark, this is particularly noticeable as it becomes harder to avoid bumps and divots that regularly appear in Irish roads. I’ve already hit a hole so hard the bell on my handlebars dinged.
How I Am Supposed To Lock This, Xiaomi?
I’m being a little facetious here because there is one easy way to lock the M365. Using a U-Lock through the back wheel, you can secure your scooter to the usual bike stands. Still, I just don’t feel this is very secure and technically you can remove the back wheel somewhat easily.
I’m looking into a few other options to make locking my scooter a little easier and more secure, but I really hope Xiaomi didn’t think the software lock would stop some lad on the Quays making off with me scooter.
It’s a real shame there’s no built-in display on the scooter. To know how fast you’re going, you’ll need to get a phone holder and fit it to your handlebars. Real estate here is really limited, so you can only pick on accessory to have.
First world problem alert, I know.
Now I did find a Wear OS app which lets me link my Android Watch to the scooter which works really well. Again, given how I’ve struggled to scoot with one hand (seriously don’t even try it) the watch still isn’t the perfect solution. I’ll be testing out another scooter soon that does have a display, so I’ll let you know if I really need it or not. As I mentioned earlier, maybe this just feeds into the simplicity.
So, for now, that’s it. I’m doing a scoot commute every day so I’ll be powering through this review. I do have a few other things to look at, but for now, the Xiaomi M365 electric scooter looks like a lot of fun. Be sure to sign up to the newsletter below and give Goosed a follow on Twitter for the full review when it’s done.