Lifestyle

A New Way To Roll Around Town

At first glance, the Yvolution Yes electric scooter looks different. The puncture-proof tires are white. The soft, anti-vibration rubbery handlebars look like faux wood. The deck seems to have come right off the side of an old Woody station wagon. The headlight is huge. A bell on the right handlebar rings loudly. And the display is nice and big, and easy to read under bright sunlight. There’s a lot of colorful, fun personality.

Then you step on it, set the speed range and twist the thumb throttle. And you’re off. It accelerates quickly, smoothly and quietly. The ride is comfortable, as the board is a floating model that absorbs the bumps. You instantly get why the scooter won the 2021 Good Design Award for the most cutting-edge product of its kind. I also love that it comes in five vibrant colors.

It tops out at 15 mph – which is a good, safe maximum speed. However, several times I ran it past an electronic speed gauge behind our home that’s intended for cars, and the Yes was traveling faster than the 15.5 mph the scooter display was indicating. Quite a bit faster. It’s almost as if the on-board gauge was limited to read 15.5 at most. And at first, the brakes on my test unit – you can use the thumb throttle on the left handlebar or step on the foot brake, both of which cut the engine and slow down the scooter – were ultra-sensitive. But then on my fourth ride, I ran over a bump and suddenly the brakes started instantly working at a perfect resistance level. Not sure what happened, but I’m neither questioning it nor complaining.

The Yes is supposed to get 15 miles per charge, which is about average for an electric scooter. In my brief experience so far, I think that estimate is pretty accurate. I noticed that while it handles the steep hills behind our home, it does so at a slightly slower speed than other models I’ve tried. But I never got the feeling it couldn’t get the job done – there was definitely enough torque from the 350W motor.

Like other scooters in its class, the Yes folds up easily via a latch on the frame and locks into place, weighs 34 pounds, and its lithium ion battery charges from empty to full in about six hours. But what I really like about it are the extra safety features. There are five points of light: the big headlight, two lower front lights, rear brake light, and a wrap-around rear brake light. Visibility is huge. And there are three speed modes: walking, mid and max that you control via the single-button interface on the display. The scooter also remembers the last mode when the scooter is turned off. And finally – not to be understated – you can quickly change the speed to mph from km. Many scooters that come from overseas are usually defaulted to km, so I think this is a huge edge for this model.

It sells for $599, which seems about average for this model. There are other scooters I still like better – because of either longer range or because they offer cruise control – but this one is more than capable and seems well built. And riding it is simply a lot of fun.

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