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I Have a Segway!

Segway miniPro 1
Segway miniPro

Thanks to Segway New Zealand I have been given the opportunity to test drive the Segway x2 SE Personal Transporter, and a Segway miniPro. Both of these devices are powered by Segway’s LeanSteer technology which means all you have to do to steer and move the transporters is… lean! The major difference between the x2 and the miniPro is that the miniPro doesn’t have a handlebar for you to hold on to as to steer, you only use your knees, 

Segway x2 SE
Segway x2 SE Personal Transporter

Last week was my week with the Segway x2 SE Personal Transporter. I opted for the x2 as opposed to the i2 because of the thicker tires. These thicker tires (with only a mere 4-6 psi of air in them) allow you to go further on rough terrains as the tires help with the dampening of bumps and holes in uneven roads. It’s also best to slightly bend your knees when going over bumps or kerbs because your knees act as suspension too! However, a drawback with opting in for the thicker tire model is that most of the time you won’t fit in regular doorways. Then again, if you were going through a lot of doorways, the i2 (with more decent sized tires) will probably suit you better.

Segway x2 SE 9

Upon first use (as with everything), there is a very shallow learning curve to be able to ride the Segway x2. It is a lot simpler than first learning to ride your bike. While first learning to ride a bike may have taken up to a full-on week with a few times falling off, the learning curve for riding a Segway the first time is very shallow. Simply step on and lean. I’ve told a lot of people who have been trying out my Segway that they must trust the Segway: by being able to freely lean forwards to go faster and lean backwards to stop or slow down. It may seem that you will fall off if you lean forwards, however the technology behind the Segway allow you to self-balance the board. The other “hoverboards” out there really can’t compete with the Segway miniPro. In fact, they don’t even “hover” so I don’t see why they are called what they are right now. They should be called “self-balancing baords” instead.

Segway miniPro 4

The Segway miniPro has a slightly different riding style, to the fact that it doesn’t have a handlebar for your hands to rest on when moving about. This alone is enough to make one fear the mighty robot transporter. Never fear though! It takes a bit of getting used to and you’ll be off in no time! After my first day of riding the miniPro I had shaking legs. This is because of all the pressure put on your legs at first because you’re afraid you might “fall off”.

I have got to say, riding around in the Segway x2 SE and the Segway miniPro out on the streets has attracted a lot of attention to these products. From heads turning in my direction in cars, buses and even trams (at Motat) to people stopping me out in the streets to want to learn more about this “hoverboard” as they would call it.

The Segway x2 SE Personal Transporter has a top speed of 20km/h and has a range of about 19km depending on riding style and terrain.

The Segway miniPro has a top speed of 16km/h and has a range of about 25km again depending on the riding style and terrain.

In conclusion, the Segway personal transporters are a very efficient way to transport yourself and myself to places just a bit too far for walking, but too close for taking the car out. It can also be used at various places too by transporting the Segway products in your car. If that’s the case, I would bring the miniPro with me instead of the x2 as the miniPro is very portable and only requires yourself to lift it in and out of your car.

The only thing that may put me off of a Segway are the prices. The Segway x2 SE Personal Transporter costs $13,995 whereas the Segway miniPro costs $2,295 which does seem a bit dear.

For more information please visit http://segway.co.nz.