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Bird One Electric Scooter Review

Daniel
19 May 2021

 

One of the best commuter scooters around that has a top speed of around 18mph and a range of up to 25 miles.

 

Bird started as a scooter rental service in California before expanding to other cities across the world. Currently, Bird has a presence in 130 cities in 5 continents, including Europe, Middle East, and North America.

While many rental scooters in the market today were designed as consumer models and later adapted as fleet models, the Bird one is different. This scooter was dedicatedly designed for rental use, and as such, remains one of the most ruggedly built scooters- tough enough to withstand reckless renters, non-stop continuous use, and associated wear and tear. 

 

Bird One – The Lowdown

 

Bird One Scooter

Now more than ever, organizations globally have become highly sensitized to the Green initiative. Consumers are spending more on products that promise to perpetuate environmental conservation, and the electric scooter industry is top of the trend. Bird is a company dedicated to reducing city traffic, reducing carbon emissions by limiting car usage, and, most importantly, offering a safe and convenient means of commuting. Bird’s mission is realized by its creation of perfectly designed, sustainable, and performance-oriented scooters. 

Offered as both a rental and consumer scooter, the Bird One is a feat of engineering mastery. Bird took the best features of top-performing scooters currently circulating the market and replicated the designs to produce the most rugged and durable scooter that a fair retail price of  $999 or £715 could afford. The Bird One has constantly been compared to Segway’s ES2 and Xiaomi’s M365- the industry’s mid-range giants- and not surprisingly outranked them on certain aspects of performance.

As their flagship e-scooter, the Bird One is proof of the company’s values and mission. 

Bird One is the company’s first consumer model in the market. It is stylish and robust, with smart management. The scooter rocks a pair of semi-solid pneumatic tyres that are puncture-proof as a halfway house for comfort and reliability. The robust motor, powered by an efficient battery, delivers fantastic performance in both speed and range. Additionally, as a fleet and consumer scooter, safety is top of the checklist, and the Bird does not disappoint with its ultra-efficient brakes, ergonomic firm-grip handlebars, and texturized deck. Finally, the bird rocks features that firmly assert its position as an incredible rental scooter like GPS connection and anti-theft protection; both managed via the iOS and Android app offerings.

Bird One Specifications

Motor36V, 300 W
Battery 12.8 Ah, 36 V, 473.6 Wh
Charge Timeup to 12 hours
Single-Charge Mileage25 miles (40 Km) - depending on the weight of rider
Max Speed18 mph (29 km/h)
Climbing Range15% grade (in optimum conditions)
Braking SystemElectronic Front Regenerative front motor brake and rear drum brake
LightingAutomatic front and rear LEDs, 30-40 lumens, reflectors.
HornBell
Max Load220 lbs. (100kg)
Scooter Weight38.6 lbs (17.5 kgs)
Product MaterialSteel-reinforced aluminum frame
Folding HandlebarUnspecified - Alloy Frame
Folding Steering TubeUnspecified - Alloy Frame
SuspensionNo suspension
Size (L x W x H, mm)Unfolded: L 109 cm x W 46.2 cm x H 119 cm

Folded: Not foldable
Water ResistanceIP Rating IP34 & IP67

Bird One Review Video

Bird One has undoubtedly earned a slot among the toughest electric scooters, having endured the beating and mishandling associated with the rental scooter market. 

Bird One Pros

 

Durable due to its steel-reinforced aluminum frame

Connects to the Bird – Be Free and Enjoy the Ride apps

  Robust motor

  Excellent range on a single charge and decent top speeds

  Precise dual braking with regenerative function

  App-Controlled anti-theft mechanism

  GPS-enabled for tracking and safety

Bird One Cons

 

  Not foldable

  No display

  Relatively heavy

  No suspensions

  Relatively pricey

 

Bird One Summary

Bird took the rental scooter market by the scruff of its neck with their impressive, durable scooters. While many companies have to choose between durability and comfort, Bird incorporated both in their Bird One electric scooter. The One is strong and solid- the true essence of a fleet model. It is also smart, allowing the rider to control it on their iOS or Android platforms. The One also sports crucial anti-theft features, including tracking via GPS and an immobilization option. You can get the scooter in any of three brilliantly chic colors; Dove White, Jet Black, and Electric Rose. 

One of the reasons behind Bird One’s solidity and durability is the lack of a folding mechanism. While great for portability, a folding mechanism introduces structural weaknesses like stem wobble, fragile folding elements, and increased wear and tear from the moving parts. Even so, the Bird’s frame is not bulky and has a relatively low weight of 38.6 lbs (not the lightest, but suffices). Bird One’s stem is secured in place by four large bolts. The frame is made from steel-reinforced aluminum, which lowers the scooter’s weight and aids in durability. The material is water-resistant, rated at IP34, and corrosion-proof. The Motor, battery, and the Bird’s brain are further reinforced to an IP67 rating for extra protection. 

The One has a top speed of 18 mph powered by a 300 W brushless front hub motor. It accelerates smoothly and has no problem climbing inclinations of up to 15% grade at an optimum load of 220 lbs. It comes with a 36V 12800 mAh battery that takes up to 12 hours to charge fully. Additionally, the One’s regenerative front motor brake and rear drum brake offer seamless stopping power. The Bird One rides on 9-inch semi-solid pneumatic tires, ensuring that you enjoy a mildly smooth ride without the worry of flat tyres. Unfortunately, it does not have a suspension system, which significantly affects the ride quality.

The handlebars are ergonomically designed for comfort, with rubber handgrips for a firmer grip and control. There is a bell next to the left-hand grip, a thumb press accelerator on the right, and a central box that’s sleek in design but lacks much performance justification save for the front-facing LED light and two LED indicators for charging state. As you go further south, the deck houses the scooter’s battery and has a rear fender attached. You will spot a red blinking LED light on the rear fender that is great for night visibility. There’s also a kickstand attached to the side of the deck. 

The One is a smart gadget with built-in GPS location technology, advanced GSM and Bluetooth connectivity that allows Bird One to pair with the Bird App. Through the app, you can track your scooter, monitor your speed and battery level, as well as control certain aspects of your ride. You can also enjoy regular firmware updates to your gadget delivered through the Over-the-Air app updates. 

Performance Overview

Before embarking on your ride, you have to power up your Bird One using the app. The 300 W motor enables the scooter to reach a top speed of 18 mph, which is more than enough in many countries, especially in Europe, where countries like the UK limit the speed to 15.5 mph. The scooter lacks speed modes, and with the lack of a display, riders are flying blind on this scooter. With this inconvenience, the dual braking mechanism comes in handy to ensure halting is uncompromised at whatever speed or riding condition.

 The scooter can climb hills with a grade of around 15% under optimum rider weight, track conditions, and weather. It will power up to a manufacturer-cited range of up to 25 miles on a single charge. 

 

bird one scooter

Top Speed & Acceleration

The scooter’s official top speed is 18 mph, with a remarkable and smooth acceleration speed, ensuring a stable ride. Since the manufacturer’s official top speed is determined under ideal situations, riders in real-world tests have cited not reaching the top speed. Factors such as the rider’s weight, road conditions, and battery level affect a scooter’s speed. The scooter has one ride mode, which would deter entry-level riders (if the price didn’t already).

Battery Life & Range

The Bird One comes with a 36V, 12800 mAh lithium-ion battery that can power the scooter for up to 25 miles on a single charge. The battery and the power supply are housed in the deck. While the scooter lacks a display on the handlebar, it displays the battery level on the Bird app. The app notifies you when the level gets dangerously low. 

Motor Configuration

The One’s motor configuration comprises a 36V, 300 W motor. Acceleration is controlled through the thumb-operated throttle on the handlebar. The motor is located inside the front wheel and is protected from debris and splashes by the front fender. 

Construction & Build Quality

Since the Bird One is designed for Bird’s ride-sharing scheme, it is built to endure the beatings of the rental market. The premise of the Bird’s construction is to tailor-make a scooter that can withstand all manner of reckless riders, falls, exposure to elements, experiments on upbeat tracks, and careful riders alike. Resultantly, the Bird is very basic. It is one of the most tested electric scooters in the market and passes the rideshare test.

It comes in a sleek body that’s deceivingly sturdy. The One’s chassis is constructed using a steel-reinforced aluminum frame and comes with a durable fixed neck, giving it a longer lifespan. The One is an improvement to its predecessor model, the Bird Zero, and the manufacturer guarantees a 12-month lifespan, two months more than the Zero.

Bird One has no visible wires that would fall prey to tugging or breaking. It’s fitted with ergonomically designed handlebars with slightly tapered rubber grips for both comfort and durability. Additionally, the handlebars are void of fragile controls and a display that would call for massive maintenance needs in the event of a fall. The deck plate is also textured for the stability of the rider. The tyres are semi-solid for a maintenance-free experience and mild shock absorption qualities.

Suspension

The scooter comes without suspension, leaving the 9-inch semi-solid pneumatic tyres with the burden of soaking up road imperfections. 

Ride Quality

Like many e-scooters, the Bird One is designed for use in cities and urban setups. Its big tyres enable it to ride over curbs and other small obstacles without a fuss. The air pockets in the semi-solid tyres offer some shock absorption, but a dedicated suspension would offer a better ride quality, which Bird left out on this scooter. The handling is stable enough to leave a hand free to check the app. Another total damper on blissful riding is the lack of a display screen, which feels inconvenient for riders who’d want to keep track of battery status and manage their speeds. However, night rides and low light rides are efficiently facilitated by the bell, the front and rear LED lights, and reflectors.

Braking

To help riders slow down and come to a complete stop, the Bird One combines the power of an electronic regenerative front motor brake and a rear drum brake. Both are controlled by a single, hand-operated brake lever located on the left side of the handlebar. Regenerative brakes convert the wasted energy produced when slowing down into battery power, ensuring your battery lasts longer. While drum brakes bring down manufacturing costs, riders need to note that this brake type requires regular servicing to retain its optimum efficiency. 

Portability

Since the Bird One does not have a folding mechanism, it scores low on portability. It is unlikely the scooter will fit in your car unless you have the storage capacity of a pick-up van. Additionally, considering its relatively higher weight (38.6 lbs), the scooter is something you do not want to carry around for long distances. 

Lights

The One comes with automatic LED front and rear 30-40 lumens lights. The in-built LED headlight is encased together with the GPS. It provides enough light to allow you to ride even at night. This Bird also comes with reflective light strips on both sides of the front and rear tyres.  The lights are switched on through the Bird app. The rear flashing light comes on when you engage the brakes to alert other road users. 

Tyres

The scooter carries 9-inch semi-solid pneumatic tyres. Semi-solid pneumatic tyres combine the shock absorption qualities of air-filled tyres with the puncture-free quality of solid tyres, ensuring you enjoy a smooth ride without worrying about a flat tyre. The tyres’ size and tread pattern also provide excellent traction, improving the scooter’s overall ride experience. 

Deck

The One’s underdeck holds the battery and power supply. Placing the battery in the deck improves convenience and lowers the scooter’s weight, aiding in stability. Riders with larger feet might find the deck too small to allow for parallel standing. The surface of the deck is also texturized to ensure a comfortable grip when standing. 

Controls & Display

As we have mentioned above, the Bird One does not have a display screen. However, the Bird app allows you to control critical aspects of the scooter like powering the scooter on and off, turning off the tamper alarm, turning on the lights, and checking battery status. There is a brake lever on the left handlebar, a thumb-press throttle acceleration, a bell, and the headlight and GPS housing. The GPS is a vital component of fleet and rental scooters. It is a safety and anti-theft feature that allows the company or the owner to track the whereabouts of the scooter and connects each Bird scooter to the Bird Hunter Network. 

Bird One electric scooter

Water Resistance

The One has a water-resistant rating of IP34, meaning you can take it out for a spin in showery conditions without worrying about water splashes or voiding the warranty. Slightly more sensitive components, such as the motor, brain, and bat, enjoy a higher water-resistant rating of IP67 for extra protection. However, it is advisable to avoid riding in the rain or snow as water damage to the scooter’s interior is potentially catastrophic.

Reliability, Warranty & Customer Support

With a range of 25 miles on a single charge, the Bird One is ideal for commuting to work or fun around the neighbourhood. However, it is essential to note that the range might reduce depending on the rider’s weight, speed, and terrain. Additionally, regenerative braking not only ensures safety but is an added benefit for battery recharge on the go. Combined with the drum brakes, they have enough stopping power to bring you to a stop whenever you need it. 

Generally, the Bird One is less vulnerable to wear and tear as compared to other scooters. The scooter’s solid, non-foldable frame is durable and has been tested and proven to withstand falls and rental beatings. Finally, its IP34 and IP67 water-resistant ratings also allow you to ride in light showers when it’s unavoidable, and you can ride without worrying about splashes or puddles. 

The One comes with a one-year limited warranty covering material and craft defects resulting from normal and ordinary use. The warranty covers repairs and replacement of parts such as:

  • Main body
  • Decklid (metal components)
  • Rear Fork Assembly
  • Front-Wheel and hub motor assembly
  • Front Fork and Neck Assembly
  • Down Tube
  • Brake Cable
  • Handlebar
  • Charging Port

The warranty covers the repair or replacement of the following parts for 180 days after purchase or activation on the Bird app:

  • Brain
  • Battery Pack
  • Power Control Module
  • Electric Brake Mechanism
  • Electronic Throttle mechanism
  • Battery Charger
  • Head Light
  • Taillight

It also covers the repair or replacement of parts subject to wear for 90 days after purchase or activation on the Bird app.

If you notice some defects on your Bird One, contact Bird’s technical support personnel at 1-866-205-2442 or hello@bird.co. Before the repair or replacement, Bird will require you to provide proof of purchase from them or an authorized dealer. They will also ask for the scooter’s serial number and your contact information. 

Maintenance

If your One is dirty, clean it with a soft, wet cloth. You can also use a toothbrush to scrub off dirt. Always keep your Bird charged to avoid delays. Avoid using corrosive cleaners such as alcohol, gasoline, and acetone. Although the One has an IP34 water-resistant rating, avoid riding in extreme weather conditions. 

Known Issues

It is common for riders to experience connectivity issues between the scooter and the Bird App on both iOS and Android.

The warranty only covers purchases made from Bird or authorized dealers only.

The covering on the deck can come off. 

Is this E-Scooter value for money and is it worth buying?

Even though the Bird One is built like a tank, it is still sleek and boasts impressive connectivity features. While the asking price of $999 or £715 is slightly on the higher side, it is a small price to pay for the One’s extensive offerings, especially the smart features. Once you scan the QR code on the handlebar and register your profile, you can switch it on and off, lock it remotely, track its location, receive notifications in case of tempering, and most importantly, receive regular updates and remote diagnosis. These specific elements bag the value-for-your-buck award.

Bird One Resources

Bird One Website

Author:
Daniel Foley

BIO: 

Daniel is an avid scooter fan who has owned and tested over 50 different scooters. Part time scooter enthusiast & part time SEO specialist.  Daniels favourite scooter is the Dualtron Thunder.

 
Summary
  • Durable due to its steel-reinforced aluminum frame
  • Connects to the Bird - Be Free and Enjoy the Ride apps
  • Robust motor
  • Excellent range on a single charge
  • Decent top speeds
  • Regular updates to the firmware ensure enhanced performance
  • Precise dual braking, with regenerative function
  • App-controlled anti-theft mechanism
  • GPS-enabled for tracking and safety
  • Not foldable
  • No display
  • Relatively heavy
  • No suspensions
  • Relatively pricey
3.6
Overall
Features
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Distance
Speed
Quality
Design

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