TVS’s updated iQube S electric scooter joins our long-term fleet and is immediately put to the test.
I’ve had very limited experience with electric two-wheelers as far as assembly goes mega EV comparison. Through a series of tests, performance tests and shootings, I spent a few hundred kilometers and a few days with Autocar India’s latest two-wheeler. And I have to say, the first impression was good.
Our long-running iQube TVS is in the middle of the S variant, finished in a Mint Blue paint shade. Now, while I’m not a fan of this color, it’s nice that TVS gives you more options than they did with the old iQube, which was only sold in White.
A very quiet engine makes for a comfortable ride.
I’m very used to ICE engines, perhaps, the thing that still surprises me about EVs in general is the lack of sound and vibration. Just for context, I was riding our long-time Royal Enfield Scram before the iQube, so you can imagine how different the experience is between the two. The iQube has a hub-mounted motor that is incredibly quiet; you don’t have to worry about EVs. And while some may not be fans of this, I grew to love it. Despite the noise and vibration, the iQube made me feel very relaxed and peaceful in what is normally a jam-packed ride.
I’ve grown to appreciate that the Qube, unlike the Ola and Chetak (although not as aggressive as the Ola), doesn’t cut power when you hit the brakes. This makes running in and out of gaps in traffic a breeze. I like the high resolution screen, and it works with the joystick, which makes it easy. However, the screen changes graphics when the motor switches to regen mode and you are off the throttle, and this causes the screen to flash constantly in traffic. This can be very annoying, especially in the dark. Switching the display to night mode helps, but unfortunately, this is something you have to do manually.
The seat is wide and comfortable for most passengers.
I’m also happy to report that the seat is nice and comfortable, which took some of the pain out of riding for hours in Mumbai traffic in the range test. And not for me, even Rishabh, who is more fit than me, found the seat happy.
Mirrors look and feel like a very cheap rental.
Build quality is good in most areas, but the ports and switchgear feel cheap. The Park assist lock on our scooter is already sticky and requires some effort to get it off and on. I also wish TVS would have provided a case for the charger or some way to wrap it up nicely and keep it safe in the boot; now the charger buzzes around in the boot when you go over bumps.
Motorcycle shutdown due to software error.
These are all niggles, but we had one more serious issue with the iQube in its first few days with us: the motorcycle suddenly shut off while Rishabh was riding home one night. The display showed an error message, suggested we contact roadside assistance, and simply refused to restart. The motorcycle was towed to a TVS service center who resolved the issue and returned it to us in five days. The issue was traced to a software bug, which was resolved by restarting the system, according to the service center. Since then, the Qube has covered hundreds of kilometers without a problem. Hopefully things stay that way going forward.