Electric motorbikes & scooters aren’t the choice for long tours but they do excel in congested urban environments & city rides due to their swift initial acceleration and limited battery capacity. Not to forget the main benefit that they are completely emission-free which is without a doubt their main selling point. There are a few electric motorbikes & scooter companies offering their products in the U.K, and “Silence” happens to be one of those companies.
The Silence S01 is the Spanish brand’s second electric scooter that I recently got a chance to test ride down here on the south coast along to Brighton and Worthing. The S01 has a quite distinctive front end that unlike some electric cars or motorbikes does not look weird at all but at the same time, it manages to make itself unique from the petrol-powered scooters available in the market. The same theme continues along its side profile that standouts due to a boxy battery pack and the wheel hub motor mounted in the rear tyre.
To me, the riding experience of the Silence S01 was pleasantly quite different from a traditional scooter in the way it accelerates silently without any lag. There are a total of three driving modes, i.e., eco, city & sports modes.
The driving dynamics such as the acceleration, top speed, and regenerative braking vary widely across all the three modes, and in my view, the city mode would be the ideal choice for normal driving since it isn’t too restrictive like the eco mode whose top speed is limited to 43 mph and the regenerative braking is also quite abrupt. The city mode provides a nice middle ground and restricts the top speed to 53 mph and the re-gen braking too is quite subtle in this mode. The sport mode increases the top speed to 62 mph which would be good for occasional high-speed runs but remember that its toll on the useable range is significantly higher than the city mode.
The overall ride quality is reasonably comfortable thanks to comfy seats and the upright riding posture. The telescopic forks at the front and the single-side mounted single shock at the rear have just an adequate amount of travel to absorb the minor imperfections, though you would feel some harsh potholes due to a small suspension travel. Another great thing about the S01 is the practicality it offers under the seat that has been made possible only because of the electric powertrain. The S01 review would be incomplete without mentioning the technical aspects of which the most important aspect is its 5.6 kWh Li-ion battery that has a real-world range of nearly 80-110 km (depending upon the driving mode). The portable battery can be removed and charged from any 240V socket and can also be utilized as an inverter which would be a great option for powering small appliances at a remote location.
You can also charge the scooter directly from a socket under the seat (cable came provided see photo above) which I found much easier than removing the battery pack. The company claim charging time is 6-8 hours.
Under the seat is ample room to store items, which should store two open face scooter style helmets or a backpack and a helmet but in my case carried bluetooth disc lock and chain.
The scooter does also have an app where you can check where the scooter is, the status of the scooter and battery many other things. Thats said I couldn’t connect when I tested the scooter due to it being locked to a previous tester.
I think this scooter is aimed at commuters who don’t commute too far or as courier/food delivery transport.
If you were travelling any further that say 35 (83 miles from 100% in Eco mode) miles a day there and back in ECO mode (even less in City and sport) you would suffer range anxiety.
It’s really handy for charging at home, however if you start running out of juice and get stuck you can’t just nip into local petrol station, supermarket or any of the electric car charging points that are springing up as their not compatible you would need to find a standard household UK plug socket (or whichever country your in).
The lag-free acceleration, easier charging options, and cheap ownership & running costs are great additional pros of the S01 electric scooter which should make it an ideal contender for anyone looking to buy a two-wheeler for day-to-day usage.
One thing it does have which is sadly missing on most bikes these days is a center stand (as well as a side stand) which can be very handy.
Would I switch fully to electric? The simple answer is no until range is extended. However that said the Silence electric scooter would make a great second bike/scooter. Perfect to just jump on (making sure charged first) to nip to the shops etc or a short commute but longer journeys petrol is still king.
Many thanks to Silence UK for the week long loan for more info on the S01 or other models head to their official Silence UK website https://www.silenceuk.com//
Helmet worn in test kindly supplied by LS2 Helmets UK
Jacket, Armoured Jeans, Gloves and Boots worn in test kindly supplied by rst-moto.com/
Bluetooth Alarmed Disc Lock, Chain and Padlock used while storing bike kindly supplied by Xena Security