The NIU UM – NIU goes naked-bike

There’s a new kid in town… the NIU UM (Pro/SL). “UM” like “U-Mini”… and that really fits.
With just 40kg and an 800W rear hub motor (from Bosch, as usual) it’s said to be capable of about 40km/h (~25 mph). Add 5 kg for the 21Ah battery (Panasonic 18650 cells) and you can expect a range of 30-40 km (18-25 miles) from the “Pro” version – which is currently only available in black.
If you want the fancy colors (white, blue, green, orange) you have to go for the “SL” version, featuring a smaller 16Ah battery reducing the range and obviously the price.
Oh price you said! How much will it be in Europe?! Sorry, we have no idea yet… “Available soon” is what NIU says.
Actually, NIU says… never. Why? The UM is build to Chinese specs.

A bit more detail

If there weren’t the pedals – yes, this is a NIU-first! – I’d say it’s a Model U in naked-bike disguise… Well, not so much naked-bike like a Ducati Monster but hey! It got pretty much the same geometry like the “U-series” at the first look…

But as soon we switch our X-ray superpower, we see there’s a totally different frame-design (the swing-arm might be the same – the front-fork definitely is), an even smaller seat and again a different battery module placed horizontally under the seat:

Yup, the battery design isn’t quite the same as in the N, M or U…

I wonder if this really works out production-cost wise? Well, on the other hand, who’s swapping batteries between models anyway…

What do you think about this new model? Would you like to see something similar in Europe?

My 2 Euro-cent would be:

  • Why using a chain? Wouldn’t a carbon belt-drive much more NIU’ish?
  • The chain looks flimsy (probably “Chinese-specs” ;-)) There’s probably a better way to lead it to the back.
  • Side-stand… anyone?

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