In November 2017 at the EICMA show in Milan, NIU unveiled their new models for this year, here’s a [quite lengthy] recap…
Updated 2018 models
There are some updates to the existing models we know from 2017:
As you’ve learned from this FAQ entry, it’s not always easy to differentiate the Chinese (aka “domestic”) models from what we get over here in Europe.
What I gathered here about the 2018 models comes from different sources in China as well as Europe, so I will mention if I’m not 100% sure that new features are just meant for the domestic (i.e. Chinese) market or for us, too.
I’ve visited my local NIU dealers and none of them had received on of the 2018 models yet. As soon I got my naughty fingers touching one, I’ll update this post accordingly.
The European N1s is a somewhat advanced version of the Chinese one due to European vehicle regulations and laws. So the 2018 model for China got some changes which were already available to European customers. Those rather “unspectacular” changes are:
- better tires (different manufacturer)
- better brakes (different manufacturer)
- brighter headlight
But there are also changes, which are quite obvious and absolutely new for the European version of the N1s:
The handlebars were updated to be more “M1’ish”. Here’s the 2017 N1s, the M1 and the Chinese 2018 N1s in comparison…
- On the left side the full-beam switch was changed from a vertical to a horizontal layout.
- The indicator knob got a slight redesign but indicator sounds were introduced! (Go here to learn how to change them)
- The horn-button got a similar design of the M1 to make room for…
- the new cruise-control button. Press it and your NIU will keep the speed until you brake.
…and the right side was changed, too:
- The “rotary mode switch” was replaced by a rocker-switch (+/-)
- The headlight on-off switch was enhanced by an auto-mode (like the one used in cars)
- Like the M1, the Chinese 2018 N1s has a button for hazard-lights
The right handlebar for the European 2018 N1s got some of the new features shaved of – while featuring the same design:
- The headlight can neither be switched off (against the law), nor does it have an auto-mode
- The button for the hazard-lights isn’t there and its function was moved into the slider above it
[Picture courtesy by user ‘Karaten’ of elektroroller-forum.de]
Also something happened between the handlebars… the European version cockpit was changed quite a bit (Actually much more than the Chinese version):
- In the top-left corner the temperature display was replaced by a clock (Some European 2017 models had that too, but you couldn’t set the time and it was the only change)
- Indicators for GPS and mobile-network connection were added
- Error messages/numbers got their own display in the top-right corner (Freeing the speedometer from being blocked by some sticky error)
Two things changed below the handlebar, too. While us Europeans already got the charging port in the under-seat compartment with the 2017 model, the Chinese 2018 models introduced a second charging port which is accessible from the outside: On the left side below the seat is a flap behind which there’s another port… quite Tesla’ish 😀
Also, if you look closer, you can spot the foot-mat covering the battery compartment. That’s included now… even for Europe.
Finally they’ve added a nice touch to the co-driver footrests: They got a spring so that they snap-out when pushed… like that:
(Not sure about the European models yet)
Sadly there seem to be downsides… or should we say downgrades?
Rumor from the forums has it, that some things had been changed for worse in the European version:
- The brakes seem to be weaker. Not only that, some people report that you can pull the break lever all the way to the handle :-/
It’s been reported that NIU did that to prevent drivers flipping over the handlebar when breaking to hard… honestly: WTF!?!
- Torque seemed to be lowered, too. That is totally not cool. Again: NOT COOL!
Not really a new model… but new to Europe. Most likely they just changed the usual stuff according to European law and regulations.
The estimated range is given at 70 kilometers. Top-speed is 45 km/h and its battery is said to recharge in seven hours.
It should be available in Europe in April.
NIU presented 3 “real” new models. As said, I’m not counting the U1 as being new…
Well, there’s actually not much more to say, that what NIU announced:
“Featuring a design similar to the N-Series scooter, the GT scooter offers more power than its younger brother. Its maximum speed is 80 km/h and has an estimated range of more than 130 kilometers. The scooter can be plugged into any outlet and is recharged in six hours.. The GT scooter will be available in Europe from September 2018.”
Presented in Paris lately, some more detail were revealed. In my humble opinion, there’s one downside: They added a 2nd battery for the extra “ooomp”. This completely fills the under-seat compartment. Here’s a picture courtesy of 1000ps.at:
And I’m still not sure wether I like the new “Rainbow dashboard” which is supposed to change colour while driving
The top-notch N-series… a serious tuning: While I believe the a maximum speed of 100 km/h, I’m really curious about the announced range of 180 kilometers in urban areas – and while it’s obvious that the GTX must have a bigger battery, NIU claims it will be recharged in six hours (like the N1S and GT).
The most confusing announcement for me is the notion of “The GTX will be available in France next September”. Just France?!
Others sources report availability in Europe for end-of-year… we’ll see.
Project X is a completely new family and not “just” an update or launch of a given Chinese model and thus, the greatest surprise of the 2018 models. It looks much more “4 stroke scooter’ish” but misses the city-scooter feeling. It is expected having a top speed of 120km/h and a range of up to 160km.
The onboard system will run Android OS (uhh, I smell lots of hacking possibilities here) and feature a touchscreen display – we’ll see if touchscreen and weather/gloves is a clever combination.
NIU said this Concept will be ready ship to Europe by Q4 2018…