Vida V1 vs Ola S1 Air: Two Leading Electric Scooters Battle It Out
Article by Drivio | 25th Sep 23
Both scooters have a very different design language
- The S1 Air packs a 4.5kW motor with a 90kmph top speed
- Hero has equipped the Vida V1 with a 6kW motor that enables a 80kmph top speed
- In terms of range though, the V1 promises 165km.
Hero's electric subsidiary, Vida, generated considerable buzz when it announced the Vida V1 electric scooter. With Hero's reputation for competitive pricing, expectations were high for a disruptively priced electric scooter. However, the reality fell short, as the Vida V1 arrived with a price tag that raised eyebrows.
In a market now abundant with sensibly priced electric scooters, exemplified by the Ola S1 Air, the question arises: Is the Vida V1 worth your consideration? To find the answer, we conducted comprehensive tests on both scooters. Below, we present the outcome of our evaluation:
Vida V1 vs Ola S1 Air: Design & Features
In terms of functionality, the Vida V1 boasts a fully digital TFT touchscreen instrument panel. It stands out by offering a range of customizable riding modes, including Eco, regular, and Sport modes, catering to a diverse range of rider preferences. The scooter features a dual-function throttle, providing versatile control, along with convenient cruise control to ensure a comfortable riding experience.
For navigation assistance, the Vida V1 integrates turn-by-turn navigation, enhancing convenience. Safety is a top priority, evident through the inclusion of an emergency alarm system. Additionally, the key fob enables keyless entry, streamlining access.
Furthermore, the Vida V1 offers a host of additional features that enhance its functionality. These include trip analytics and scooter diagnostics, allowing riders to monitor performance effectively. The regenerative braking system contributes to energy efficiency, while the follow-me-home lighting feature enhances post-ride visibility.
In contrast, the Ola S1 Air takes a more utilitarian approach in its design, catering to daily commuters. It features a level floorboard, complemented by sleek black body cladding, a single-piece pillion grab rail, and robust steel wheels, diverging from the alloy wheel design seen in its higher-priced siblings, the S1 and S1 Pro. Unlike its flashier counterparts, the S1 Air opts for a more approachable aesthetic within the Ola S1 range.
Vida V1 vs Ola S1 Air: Motor & Range
|Specifications||Vida V1||Ola S1 Air|
|Range||143km/ 165km charge||125km (Eco Mode)|
The Vida V1 employs an air-cooled swingarm-mounted motor, delivering a maximum power output of 6kW. This power level aligns closely with that of the Ather 450X, and it's particularly impressive in the acceleration range of 20-50kph, especially when engaging the Sport mode. However, this strong performance tapers off as speeds exceed this range.
The Vida V1 achieves a reported top speed slightly exceeding 80kph, and notably, it demonstrated no signs of overheating or thermal stress during our extensive testing period.
On the other hand, the Ola S1 Air is propelled by an electric hub motor with a rated power output of 2.7kW and an impressive peak power of 4.5kW. This motor draws its energy from a 3kWh battery pack, granting the electric scooter an official range of up to 125km and a top speed hovering around 90kmph.
It's worth noting that there's a slight delay between twisting the throttle and the scooter initiating forward motion, particularly noticeable during passing maneuvers. Interestingly, during rapid deceleration, the scooter exhibits a unique trait where it maintains some level of acceleration even after releasing the throttle.
Vida V1 vs Ola S1 Air: Suspension, Tyres & Brakes
|Specifications||Vida V1||Ola S1 Air|
|Front Suspension||Telescopic Fork||Telescopic Fork|
|Rear Suspension||Monoshock||Dual Shock Absorbers|
|Front brake||Disc||Drum Brakes|
|Rear brake||Drum||Drum Brakes|
Our hands-on experience with the Vida V1 was confined to the impeccably smooth test circuits at Hero's expansive Centre for Innovation and Technology in Jaipur. Despite this controlled environment, it was evident that the scooter's suspension system demonstrated remarkable adaptability. With expectations of even better performance on actual roads, the Vida V1 features a suspension setup designed to effectively absorb various road irregularities.
Equipped with 12-inch wheels shod with MRF tyres, the Vida V1 showcased commendable traction, particularly in dry conditions. The only minor drawback observed on the track was the main stand slightly scraping at extreme lean angles—a negligible concern in real-world riding scenarios.
Vida V1 vs Ola S1 Air: Dimensions
|Dimensions||Vida V1||Ola S1 Air|
Upon close examination, the Vida V1 stands out as a remarkably spacious scooter, a characteristic that greatly contributes to its overall seated experience. The floorboard maintains an ergonomically elevated design, promoting a comfortable riding stance, while the seat provides a pleasant and accommodating seating arrangement. The positioning of the handlebar further enhances rider comfort.
Despite its weight of 125kg, the Vida V1 Pro falls within the weightier segment of the scooter market, placing it in a similar category as the Ola scooter. However, its actual feel defies the weight on paper; the scooter manages to feel lighter than expected. Notably, it incorporates a reverse function, a feature commonly found among electric scooters. The braking system complements the scooter's performance aptly, aligning well with its overall capabilities.
In contrast, the S1 Air tips the scales at 108kg, achieving a noticeable reduction of 13kg compared to its counterpart, the S1 Pro. This difference becomes apparent right from the start. The agility in changing directions becomes notably more responsive, and maneuvering the scooter around corners feels remarkably easier. The implementation of a smaller battery pack effectively eliminates the perceived heftiness associated with the S1 Pro, delivering a lighter and more agile riding experience in the case of the S1 Air.
Vida V1 vs Ola S1 Air: Price
|Model||Price (Effective Price, Karnataka)|
|Vida V1 Plus||Rs 1,45,000|
|Vida V1 Pro||Rs 1,59,000|
|Ola S1 Air||Rs 1,19,999|
Hero offers the Vida V1 in two enticing options: the Vida V1 Plus, priced at Rs 1,45,000, and the V1 Pro, available for Rs 1,59,000 (inclusive of on-road charges in Karnataka).
In light of recent changes in FAME 2 subsidies, the cost of the Ola S1 Air has been adjusted to Rs 1,19,999 (both figures reflecting ex-showroom prices and accounting for the FAME 2 subsidy). Prospective buyers are presented with a choice of four appealing color options: Porcelain White, Coral Glam, Midnight Blue, and Liquid Silver.
Certainly, the Vida V1 undeniably boasts an array of impressive features. However, the key issue at hand revolves around the somewhat steep pricing associated with this offering. The Vida V1 is priced at Rs 1.45 lakh ex-showroom, while the Vida V1 Pro steps in at Rs 1.59 lakh ex-showroom, with both figures accounting for the FAME 2 subsidy.
These price points firmly position the scooter at the pinnacle of the current electric vehicle (EV) scooter market. It's noteworthy that Hero appears to have drawn inspiration from successful models like the Ather 450X and the Bajaj Chetak, both of which have established a strong market presence despite residing within a similar price range.
The underlying dilemma revolves around Hero's well-established reputation for delivering cost-effective and value-driven solutions. Historically, their offerings have consistently undercut the competition in terms of pricing.
Unfortunately, the Vida V1 not only marks Hero's most premium offering to date but also commands nearly double the cost of certain gasoline-powered scooters within their lineup. This presents a potential challenge that the company may need to navigate as they venture into this higher price segment.
So, is the S1 Air the scooter to consider? While its lower price may appear to offer better value for money, it's not without its drawbacks. If you're in the market for an affordable electric scooter, we recommend exploring alternative options such as the TVS iQube S or the Ather 450S, which may better align with your budget and requirements.