TVS iQube S review: Should you buy it or wait for iQube ST?

₹97.31 - 1.85 Lakhs*
*Ex-showroom price
4 out of 5
Pros
  • Comfortable ride quality
  • Perfect as a family scooter
  • Delivers consistent performance and range
  • Practicality
Cons
  • Strong regen
  • Finicky joy stick
  • No ABS
  • TVS iQube S is the mid-spec version of the electric scooter. It competes against Ather 450X, Bajaj Chetak and Ola S1.
TVS iQube is offered in three variants. There is Standard, S and ST. The ST still has not gone on sale.
In Eco mode, the DTE shows a riding range of 105 km. 
In Power mode, the riding range decreases to 75 km. 
The charging port is located on the front apron but it is flapped from below. 
There is a hub motor at the rear and the ‘Electric’ badging glows blue while charging and while the scooter is parked.
The underseat storage is quite large and has a USB port as well. But it cannot store a helmet.
The suspension feels compliant and absorbs all the bumps quite easily and there is no rattling issue.
The brakes offer a good bite, there is a disc in the front and a drum at the rear. TVS also offers CBS because of which the wheels lock-up on gravel roads. 
Overall, the iQube S is a very sorted electric scooter. One can wait for the ST if he or she wants more range and some more additional features such as TPMS and touchscreen. 
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TVS offers the iQube in Standard and S trim only. The ST Trim is expected to launch in the coming months.
TVS iQube is offered in three variants. There is Standard, S and ST. The ST still has not gone on sale.
1/9
TVS iQube is offered in three variants. There is Standard, S and ST. The ST still has not gone on sale.
In Eco mode, the DTE shows a riding range of 105 km. 
2/9
In Eco mode, the DTE shows a riding range of 105 km. 
In Power mode, the riding range decreases to 75 km. 
3/9
In Power mode, the riding range decreases to 75 km. 
The charging port is located on the front apron but it is flapped from below. 
4/9
The charging port is located on the front apron but it is flapped from below. 
There is a hub motor at the rear and the ‘Electric’ badging glows blue while charging and while the scooter is parked.
5/9
There is a hub motor at the rear and the ‘Electric’ badging glows blue while charging and while the scooter is parked.
The underseat storage is quite large and has a USB port as well. But it cannot store a helmet.
6/9
The underseat storage is quite large and has a USB port as well. But it cannot store a helmet.
The suspension feels compliant and absorbs all the bumps quite easily and there is no rattling issue.
7/9
The suspension feels compliant and absorbs all the bumps quite easily and there is no rattling issue.
The brakes offer a good bite, there is a disc in the front and a drum at the rear. TVS also offers CBS because of which the wheels lock-up on gravel roads. 
8/9
The brakes offer a good bite, there is a disc in the front and a drum at the rear. TVS also offers CBS because of which the wheels lock-up on gravel roads. 
Overall, the iQube S is a very sorted electric scooter. One can wait for the ST if he or she wants more range and some more additional features such as TPMS and touchscreen. 
9/9
Overall, the iQube S is a very sorted electric scooter. One can wait for the ST if he or she wants more range and some more additional features such as TPMS and touchscreen. 

Electric two-wheelers make a lot of sense for people who will be using them only for city commutes and for performing their daily chores. Moreover, they are quite practical also. Electric two-wheelers are becoming more and more popular especially since legacy manufacturers such as Bajaj and TVS entered the segment.

TVS Motor Company first launched the iQube electric scooter in January 2020. Then they provided a significant update to the iQube in 2022. The manufacturer introduced three variants - Base, S and ST. It is important to note that the ST variant has still not gone on sale, TVS has not yet revealed the price nor they have announced a delivery timeline. One of the questions, that people have is whether they should wait for the ST trim or buy the current variants. Well, I have also booked the iQube ST and to find out whether it is worth waiting or not, I decided to live for a few days with the iQube S. Here are my views after riding the iQube S for 500 km.

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TVS iQube S: Looks and build quality

In terms of design, all the variants of the iQube look identical apart from the variant badging and colour schemes. The iQube does not really stand out while riding in the city, it has a very conventional design, just like an ICE-powered scooter. There is a U-shaped LED Daytime Running Lamp on the handlebar while the headlamp and tail lamp are thin strips of LED units. The throw from the headlamp is quite good and is quite decent even on the highbeam. An interesting touch is the Electric badging on the rear left swingarm that glows blue while charging. The iQube is very well built, and there are absolutely no rattles from anywhere while going over bad roads.

TVS iQube S: Battery pack, range and charging

The ambient light sensor of the screen is quite slow. The rider needs to manually toggle between Day and Night modes.
The ambient light sensor of the screen is quite slow. The rider needs to manually toggle between Day and Night modes.

This is the area where there is quite a big difference when compared to the ST variant. The iQube S comes with a 3.04 kWh battery pack, TVS claims a riding range of 100 km in Eco mode and 75 km in Power mode. However, the screen would show a DTE read-out of 105 km at 100 per cent battery. On the other hand, the iQube ST has a larger 4.56 kWh battery pack that has a claimed range figure of 145 km in Eco mode and 110 km in Power mode. I found the range to be quite believable, there were no sudden range drops, the DTE was always very consistent and after a while, your confidence starts increasing as you start trusting the DTE more. This is when the range anxiety slowly starts going away. However, still, 105 km of range for some people might not be enough.

For my use case scenario, I used to plug in the scooter whenever I returned home, then use the scooter in the evening and plug it in again when I returned home. I didn't have to charge the scooter overnight as I used to turn off the charger before sleeping and the scooter would often be around 100 per cent, always ready for the next day. In terms of charging times, TVS says that the scooter takes 4 hours and 30 minutes to fully charge but that is the thing, for my use case, I never had to fully charge it so charging times were not as long and this might be true for many other people as well. A special mention goes to the way the charger is designed, it is long and there is a dedicated handle that can be used to pick up the charger. Having said that, a charging case would have been nice and it does take some time to get used to the way the charger clicks into the charging socket.

It feels like the charging flap should have been hinged on the top instead of the bottom.
It feels like the charging flap should have been hinged on the top instead of the bottom.

Speaking of charging, the iQube ST comes with a faster 950 W charger that takes 4 hours and 6 minutes to fully charge and there is an optional 1500 W charger as well that takes just 2 hours and 30 minutes. There is regenerative braking also that helps in preserving the battery and it is quite strong but once you get used to it, the usage of traditional brakes decreases quite a lot.

TVS iQube S: Ride and handling

The ride quality of the iQube is very good, it is subtle and comfortable. The suspension setup absorbs most of the bad patches and only the sharpest bumps are transferred to the rider because the suspension starts bottoming out. Now, the handling part, iQube S feels nimble, it maintains its line while cornering but the front-end does feel a bit heavy in bumper-to-bumper traffic.

TVS iQube S: Performance

All the variants of the iQube are powered by a BLDC hub-mounted motor that produces 4.4 kW of peak power, 140 Nm of peak torque and 33 Nm of rated torque output. A special mention goes to how smooth and silent the scooter is.

As mentioned above, the scooter has two riding modes, there is Eco and Power. The Eco mode packs in enough performance that one can ride the scooter in the city without any issues but the top speed is limited. Then there is the Power mode, in which the increase in power delivery can be felt instantly. The scooter starts pulling strongly and hits its speedo-indicated top speed of 86 kmph. The scooter does not limit its performance even after using it in Power mode for long durations. However, one thing that I did notice is that the instrument cluster would show an error but there would be no error in the system which is quite weird.

TVS iQube S: Braking

The braking duties on the iQube S are done by a disc in the front and a drum at the rear. The brakes have a good bite but they come with CBS and there is no ABS on offer. While it is useful in most cases, white riding on gravel roads, the wheels seem to lock-up because of the CBS. It would have been nice if TVS offered ABS or maybe they can add it to the iQube ST.

TVS iQube S: Features

TVS has equipped with iQube with all LED lighting.
TVS has equipped with iQube with all LED lighting.

In terms of features, the iQube S is equipped with a digital screen that shows all the vital information. It does come with day/night themes but they don't change automatically. What does change automatically is the brightness but it is quite slow to respond. The screen is not a touchscreen unit, that is reserved for the ST trim. To operate the screen on the iQube S, there is a joystick but it is quite finicky to use. There is also connected tech and its application is quite slick for the most part. However, connecting it to show music and navigation details is quite finicky. There is also a USB port under the seat that can be used to charge mobile devices. Apart from this, there is LED lighting, a hazard switch and reverse mode but it is a bit awkward to use. One important thing to note is that the scooter does not make any sound which is good for an electric vehicle but this means that often other people can't hear it.

TVS iQube S: Verdict

The iQube is one of the most sorted electric scooters that a person can buy in the Indian market. A person who will be using the scooter only for city duties can opt for the S trim and if he or she is on a budget, even the Standard trim should be fine. The ST trim makes sense for those who need that extra bit of riding range, touchscreen, fast charging and more features. The Standard trim of the iQube is priced at 99,130 whereas the iQube S costs 1.04 lakh. Both these prices are ex-showroom, Delhi and include Fame II subsidy. The iQube has to compete against other electric scooters such as Ather 450X, Bajaj Chetak and Ola S1.

First Published Date: 23 Apr 2023, 18:49 PM IST
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