10 kg and 12-inch front wheel, we rode with this electric scooter like no other

10 kg thanks to titanium, 1.5 kW at the rear, 12-inch front wheel: this new kind of electric scooter passed into the hands of CssTricks for a ride. Here’s our take.

We already presented it to you a few days ago, this electric scooter like no other brings a real breath of fresh air. The Urban Native T9 is unlike any other on the market, so we wanted to get to grips with it as quickly as possible.

A mountain dweller who aims for… cycle paths

It is on the banks of the Seine in Paris that CssTricks was able to discover “in real life” this brand new French brand, including its founder Julien Vaney. “It’s the culmination of a childhood dream” he delivers, “I was born in the mountains, I wanted to rediscover the sensations of sliding”. An entrepreneur after having been employed for a long time in the services, he considers that “ the other machines don’t give it that”. Even powerful electric scooters like the Dualtron and others? Obviously not.

Urban Native T9 Julien Vaney

Because these models are often heavy and high, like large V8 Range Rovers. The Urban Native T9 sticks to the ground and favors lightness, like McLaren or Ferrari. Because this is the dividing point of this machine with only 10.2 kg, unheard of for us in tester memory. That’s half as much as a Ninebot Max G2, and 5 kg less than an entry-level Xiaomi Electric Scooter 4.

A unique featherweight scooter

The strength is in the grade 9 titanium design (alloy with aluminum), for this slender structure. The Urban Native is held together by a steering column, a fixie bike-style handlebar, a single-sided front fork, and a lower central tube.

To fold it, Julien Vaney was inspired by Brompton folding bikes with a rotating lever hinge. It is therefore very easy to operate. With a flick of the hand, the scooter curls up onto its right side, with a clip holding the stem to the engine block.

With 10 kg on the scale, it’s a joy to carry: never have we seen such simplicity and ease, for what remains a large electric scooter (1.20 m). Long, it nevertheless considers its size and thus prefers to park at height in “Monolito” mode, resting on the handlebars. The opposite of a Pure Advanced + wanting to be cubic, but just as clever.

Easy handling

The weight and ergonomics are even more surprising, especially since the T9 boasts very high performance. It takes a little help – well, a trigger – to tame the Urban Native without a deck: your feet are positioned on two titanium strips on either side of the tube.

This long scooter, however, opts for overly protruding sides that can cause injury during certain maneuvers, but it lets you find the ideal driving position, knowing that a rear footrest (which has a stop light) is practical.

To start, you must press the button on the central screen. This simple one-number display shows the range for a few seconds, before 0 on the speedometer. Around it, we note five small dots for the charge level on the left, and three dots below. This is the sign of three levels of assistance, distributing the powers as desired via the application.

Stunning performance

Here, we had 750 W in mode 1, while the 3 had the maximum of 1,500 W. We tell you right away, mode 1 is already very powerful, close to the Ninebot Max G2 or Navee S65.

But with 10 kg less, the 750 W looks more like 900 to 1000 W. Above all, the Urban Native T9 has good acceleration from the first meters, without the need to push with your foot. However, it is possible to dose all this in the application, and to start in a more traditional way with a light stroller, as is the case with other electric scooters.

Mode 2 pushes more, and in mode 3, it’s very impressive, 25 km/h being reached in just 3 seconds. We prefer the latter mode when the crowds are low or in large spaces, because it remains far too lively on the popular slopes of central Paris.

Very poorly balanced braking and Spartan comfort on cobblestones

It is also very easy to control the acceleration. The motor has 600 W energy regeneration, with which we are able to stop without touching the brake lever.

The brake is perhaps the downside of this electric scooter: it is only linked to the front disc with Shimano caliper, which is certainly very biting, but can send you forward in the event of emergency braking. In contrast, regeneration restores up to 20% energy, or 7 kilometers per charge.

Urban Native T9 front wheel

The other negative point of the Urban Native T9 is comfort. The large 12-inch front wheel and the 8-inch rear tire with large sidewalls – because the engine is offset – absorb small imperfections well. On the other hand, as soon as the cobblestones ring, the vertebrae resonate. The titanium reflects vibrations enormously, while the monotube structure and the absence of suspension do not help.

Nevertheless, what a thrill to spin behind the handlebars of this French machine, which is certainly short but which provides good stability. We would have liked to see it a little wider than 38 cm, while keeping the Brooks handles, but without the bell a littlecheap.

Golden prize for the titanium electric scooter that forgets details

It should be remembered that the T9 asks for 3,300 euros. This is the price of titanium – currently welded in Spain near Barcelona –, a European assembly (in Portugal) and an engine designed in-house. But the object is made to last, where Asian machines “are disposable” for Julien Vaney. The 5-year warranty is there to prove it, but the founder clearly sees the Urban Native T9 lasting a lifetime.

Urban Native T9

For those with the budget, you will have to go through the official website, or the only physical point of sale in Paris (Le Vélo parisien). Concerning maintenance, it would be simple because it could be done via any bicycle retailer for the tires, brakes, handlebars or handles. However, there are doubts about the electronics with a screen and a specific application, while the remote motor with its solid aluminum casing remains accessible (unlike the wheel motor which is more complicated to manage).

Some omissions, and autonomy to be defined

What about endurance? On the short course of the day, difficult to judge. We used 20% energy for about 6-7 kilometers, with lots of acceleration and our 80 kg. We can therefore count on approximately 30-35 km, with the integrated 400 Wh battery (8 Samsung 18600 cells), which is found in the tube, under the feet. Charging is done via a USB-C port with an external transformer, for a total charging time of 4 hours.

Urban Native T9 mudguards

Finally, note that the scooter does not have a mudguard. This equipment was accessory in this summer sun in the middle of October, but Urban Native will offer soft bibs in future orders. The kickstand is not standard either. We will still have to judge this total package during a real test in all conditions, where we can talk about autonomy in more depth.

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