Ampere Primus review — does it amp up the desirability factor?

Ampere Primus review: Is this the right electric scooter for families? Here’s what we think on our first ride impression.

ampere primus review
Ampere Primus electric scooter

Ampere’s latest launch, the Primus electric scooter has big shoes to fill, especially with the target audience in mind — families. Launched at Rs 1.10 lakh, the Ampere Primus takes a dig at other scooters in the segment such as the Bajaj Chetak, Ola S1, Ather, and Bounce amongst others. However, it also sits amidst other ICE scooters in the 110cc category. So how is it able to stand out, rather, does it?

Let’s start with the design and the looks, a big selling point in this segment. At first glimpse, the Ampere Primus does not look different from any other scooter, however, look closer and you will begin to notice the details.

The EV manufacturer has drawn inspiration from the Arctic Tern, a slender bird known for its long migratory habit. The design theme is visible up front with the angular wing design embedded between the turn signals and towards the rear section as well. Add that to the colour options the Primus is available in, you suddenly notice more about the scooter’s design.

The LED headlights, the turn signals, and the well-integrated tail lamp all falls in place to showcase the overall styling of the Primus. Add that to the fit and finish, and it begins to stand out from the rest.

ampere primus design

Ride quality

Ride quality and handling are two aspects that do not get along with each other in this segment. However, Ampere has found a balance and the Primus, similar to its build quality, offers a surprisingly stable ride. The suspensions are set up slightly on the stiffer side, but it manages to soak up the bumps well, and the story’s the same when you lean into a corner.

Although the targeted segment wouldn’t look for cornering stability, it’s assuring to know that the Primus is well composed. However, carry a little too much speed and you’re quickly reminded that the Primus is offered with drum brakes only, front and rear. The brakes do a decent job, but a disc brake up front is something Ampere should think about.

Engine specifications and performance

ampere primus engine specs

Staying on the topic of ride quality, the Primus’ 3KWh battery pack propels the scooter to a top speed of 92kmph, while the company claims a range of 107km. The Primus gets three riding modes: Eco, City, and Power. The Eco mode limits the scooter’s top speed to 42kmph, while in City mode, the speed is limited to 62kmph. The Primus can do 92kmph in Power mode, while also accelerating from 0 to 40kmph in 4.2 seconds.

Ampere says that the Primus can be fully charged in 5 hours using a regular charger, while with a quick charger, the same can be done in 2.5 hours. We will know more about the range and charging time when we have the scooter for longer to run the battery pack through multiple cycles.

Also, unlike most EVs on sale today, the Primus gets a mid-mounted 4kW motor that delivers power to the rear wheel through a belt drive. It is this combination that can get unnerving at times because the Primus is no slouch to accelerate, but the same needs to be shed with better efficiency.

Equipment – What’s on offer?

ampere primus features

The first thing one would notice on the Ampere Primus is the old-school digital instrument cluster. Riders get to know the speed, distance to empty, battery charge left, and all the needed warning lights. The console is simple. While it offers Bluetooth connectivity, many options found with its competitors are not offered, such as phone calls, messages, music, speakers, etc.

This may turn down a few customers, but in our opinion, simplicity is key at times, and this is one such example. However, there is a drawback — the console offers so much data that it can distract the rider. For example, two bars show details, alongside many different numbers. Ampere says that there is a slightly dulled-down version of the console, but what would be good is a simple cluster to show speed, trip, battery charge and distance to empty.

ampere primus review
The Primus offers 22-litres of storage under the seat

The Primus offers a 22-litre boot under the seat, adequate to carry things and a full-face helmet. Apart from this, there is also a storage option in the front, enough to carry smaller items such as a mobile phone, wallet, cards, etc.

Should you buy one?

ampere primus brakes

On the whole, the Ampere Primus is a well-rounded electric scooter that offers the right balance between performance, looks, and range for families. It has enough charm to entice the younger generation as well while offering more practicality in the budget.

However, the same can be amped but several times more with a few add-ons like a disc brake, and a few things taken off, like some of the information displayed on the dash. Overall, if you are looking for an electric scooter, the Ampere Primus is something you should consider.

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First published on: 06-04-2023 at 21:23 IST