If the Electric Scooter Pro 2 has rightly asserted itself as the queen of electric scooters thanks to an unbeatable value for money, we must not forget its little sister, the Essential with less extensive capacities but at the price much more content.
This entry-level electric scooter also shares a large number of points in common with its big sister, so we invite you to read or re-read our test of the Mi Electric Scooter Pro 2 in order to have a more global vision of the offer from Xiaomi.
No doubt, it's a Xiaomi
At first glance, the Essential looks like all other Xiaomi electric scooters. In fact, in its appearance and in its equipment, it follows the codes and part of the equipment of its predecessors. If its exterior appearance remains quite close to the Pro version, some details, and not the least, however differ. For starters, she doesn't have the same dimensions as her cronies. With a shorter and narrower chainring, it is slightly smaller but also a little lighter (12 kg compared to 14 for the Pro 2). This amputation of space under the feet does not cause loss of comfort. Driving an Essential model is just as easy as driving a Pro version.
The other differences are in more specific points of the equipment. The handles of the Essential are low-end foam, where the Pro 2 favors an otherwise stronger plastic grip. The wheels, for their part, no longer have the red border reserved for the top of the range. On the other hand, Xiaomi had the good idea to equip its Essential model with the same new features as those discovered on the very last Pro 2. This can be seen on its excellent screen on the one hand, but also on the reflectors or reinforcements of mudguard. From a design and equipment point of view, the Mi Electric Scooter Essential is therefore not a cheap Pro 2. While there are differences with the manufacturer’s flagship model, they are still acceptable given the price difference. Unfortunately, this finding on the aesthetic aspect is not found on the technical side of the scooter.
Voluntarily limited performance
Can we really speak of development in the case of the Mi Electric Scooter Essential. In fact, the creative process that led to the commercialization of this model could be more like recycling. To build its entry-level scooter, Xiaomi therefore reused a well-known design, of course, but also components that had equipped its previous models, the battery in particular. On its entry-level model, the manufacturer uses its old 5200 mAh batteries to offer a range of around 20 km (compared to 30 km for the 1S and 45 km for the Pro 2). In practice, this promise of autonomy is respected, provided that the difference in height is limited. The approach is nothing to be ashamed of, and could have been totally welcomed if at the same time Xiaomi had not voluntarily restricted the capabilities of its machine.
Indeed, that a smaller battery has a lower autonomy, it is understood quite easily. But that the engine power is capped at 20 km / h, it is much more difficult to justify. This is because the Essential not only offers less pleasure, but also suffers more on hills. Admittedly, for a price of 300 euros, it is difficult to hope for performances worthy of the Pro 2. Is this a reason to accept being bored on board or, worse, to be overtaken by Lime? rent ?
Above all, this very artificial clamping seems carried out with the aim of enhancing the flagship model, the Pro 2 by artificially creating a performance gap between the two models, even though the larger battery and the best equipment of the second are enough to explain the rise in range.
Complete equipment at a low price
On the other hand, there is one aspect on which Xiaomi is simply irreproachable: the richness of the equipment. Indeed, the Essential, like the brand's other scooters, comes in a well-stocked box. The new owner of the Essential will find not only his car, but also a padlock, a spare wheel and a flexible adapter to inflate it more easily. This kind of attention is welcome, even more so for an entry-level product.
Finally, in general, the equipment of the Essential, like that of the Pro 2, inspires confidence both by its apparent solidity and by the attention to detail. An example: the screws supplied for mounting the scooter (a fairly basic operation) are equipped with a thread lock, that is to say a blue anaerobic glue applied to the thread which delays its unscrewing. Again, this kind of detail underlines the care taken in the manufacture of scooters, especially since Xiaomi allows itself to provide an additional screw, just in case …