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Ola S1 Air Road Test Review: A Lot To Work On

Ola S1 Air Road Test Review: A Lot To Work On

Article by Drivio | 9th Aug 23

At Rs 79,999, the S1 Air was incredibly affordable when it was launched. Things have changed since though. 

  • Ola has given the S1 Air a 2.98kWh battery pack which promises a 125km range in Eco mode. 
  • What’s even more interesting is that this one gets a hub motor, similar to the TVS iQube S.
  • That said, it still retains the futuristic 7-inch TFT console that the S1 Pro packs. 

On the auspicious eve of 15th August last year, Ola took the wraps off its much-awaited, most affordable scooter, the S1 Air. But soon after, there was no talk about it for a long time after. In fact, we were able to ride the scooter almost a year after its launch date. So has the scooter been worth the wait or does it feel like a compromise? Here’s what we thought: 

Ola S1 Air: Design & Features

Unlike its pricier counterparts, the S1 and S1 Pro, the Ola S1 Air takes on a more commuter-focused design. This rendition features a level floorboard, along with sleek black body cladding, a unified pillion grab rail, and sturdy steel wheels in lieu of alloy ones. In comparison to its upscale siblings, the S1 Air forgoes the eye-catching design elements, positioning itself as a notably approachable variant within the Ola S1 lineup.

Notably, the Ola S1 Air incorporates an all-LED lighting configuration and boasts a 7-inch TFT instrument console enhanced with touch-enabled functionality. This console integrates Bluetooth connectivity for seamless navigation and introduces an array of features, encompassing music control, remote unlocking capabilities, and a practical side-stand alert. Remarkably, the scooter is primed for over-the-air software updates, promising ongoing enhancements to its feature suite. 

Sporting three distinct riding modes—Eco, Normal, and Sports—the S1 Air also showcases a well-contoured single-piece seat concealing a spacious 34-litre storage compartment underneath.

Ola S1 Air: Motor &Specs

Specifications  Ola S1 Pro 
Motor4.5kW
Top Speed90kmph
Battery2.98kWh
Range125km (Eco Mode)

Propelling the Ola S1 Air is a hub-type electric motor, which generates a rated power of 2.7kW and a formidable peak power of 4.5kW. This motor draws its energy from a 3kWh battery pack, bestowing upon this electric scooter an official range of 125km and a maximum speed of around 90kmph.

A minor delay remains apparent between turning the throttle and the scooter's initiation of forward movement or acceleration for overtaking. During rapid deceleration, a discernible tendency emerges wherein the scooter maintains a degree of acceleration even after the throttle is released. This delay becomes more pronounced when operating in the Hyper and Sport modes, characterized by heightened power delivery to the motor.

Ola S1 Air: Chassis

SpecificationsOla S1 Pro 
Front SuspensionTelescopic Fork
Rear SuspensionDual Shock Absorbers 
Front Tyre110/70-12
Rear Tyre110/70-12
Front brakeDrum Brakes
Rear brakeDrum Brakes

Ola has now shifted from its single fork to a conventional telescopic fork and unfortunately, that hasn’t had a big impact on how the scooter rides. It still feels stiff and a bit crashy, especially going over our bad roads and the pillion, especially, could have a hard time on it.

Its efficacy diminishes when confronted with substantial obstacles, potentially leading to a less comfortable and more jarring ride experience. On a positive note, the Ola S1 Pro excels in cornering dynamics. The combination of its suspension system, robust tubular chassis, and generously sized 12-inch tyres collectively imparts a reassuring feeling of confidence and stability while navigating turns.

Ola S1 Air: Dimensions

DimensionsOla S1 Pro 
Length1859mm
Width712mm
Height1160mm
Wheelbase1359mm
Seat height792mm
Ground clearance165mm
Kerb weight108kg

At 108kg, the S1 Air is a whole 13kg lighter than the S1 Pro and that’s apparent from the moment you set out on it. Direction changes feel a lot quicker and flicking it around corners feels a lot easier to do. Given the smaller battery pack, the apparent heaviness that the S1 Pro brought is now no longer there on the S1 Air. 

Ola S1 Air: Price

ModelPrice (ex-showroom Delhi, including FAME II subsidy)
Ola S1 ProRs 1,19,999

The Ola S1 Air is available exclusively in a single configuration, featuring a 2.98kWh battery pack. During its initial release, this variant is offered at a compelling introductory price of Rs 1,09,999. 

Following this limited period, the Ola S1 Air's price will shift to Rs 1,19,999 (both figures being ex-showroom rates and inclusive of the FAME 2 subsidy). Prospective buyers can select from a range of four appealing paint options: Porcelain White, Coral Glam, Midnight Blue, and Liquid Silver.

Verdict

While the S1 Air is a quite decent scooter on the whole, some of the glaring issues, like the throttle calibration and the ride quality is something Ola will have to sort out as soon as possible, or else it may pose some serious issues to prospective buyers.