Electric appliance and smartphone maker Xiaomi has launched two new electric mopeds in China, with prices beginning at USD420 (Approximately Rs 32,000). Called the A1 and A1 Pro, these lightweight electric mopeds are largely the same, except for the Pro's extended battery range and touchscreen instrument panel.
The Xiaomi A1 and A1 Pro are positioned as daily city runabouts and that's evident in their 25kph top speed. While the company hasn't revealed the hub-mounted motor's capacity, the top speed is in keeping with China's laws regarding electric mopeds. Whether the motor is capable of propelling the moped to a higher top speed is still unknown.
On the other side, the A1 has a claimed range of 60km while the A1 Pro can cover 70km before running out of juice. The A1 Pro has higher range because it comes with a larger battery pack, at 9.6kWh, while the A1 has a smaller 7.68kWh unit. The best bit though is that the battery is removeable, making it convenient to cart it up to a charging socket inside your home or office.
In terms of design, the A1 and A1 Pro look the same. The functional design is attractive, but there's no space for a pillion, highlighting the moped's application as a personal mobility solution.
The suspension at the front is a usual telescopic fork, while at the rear, a set of conventional twin shocks take care of damping out rough roads.
Being an established smartphone and tablet maker has also helped Xiaomi incorporate some interesting features into its electric mopeds as well. The instrument panel, for instance, is a full-colour instrument cluster with GPS navigation. There's a 1,080p wide-angle camera as well, allowing users to record their rides. The footage can be stored on the A1 Pro's onboard memory bank. The A1, however, will need an external memory stick to store the video clips.
The Xiaomi A1 and A1 Pro are currently on sale in China only. While the company hasn't announced any plans of introducing its electric two-wheelers in India, the prospect should be highly lucrative. This is considering the boom in the electric two-wheeler market and Xiaomi's popularity and wide network in India when it comes to smartphones.