Bike-scooters/ First-drive/ River Indie | Purposefully Practical | First Ride Review

River Indie | Purposefully Practical | First Ride Review

Commuting has been revolutionized with the introduction of electric vehicles, bringing a refreshing change to our mobility options.


Practicality , Seating Comfort , Looks


Weight , Switchgear quality


River Indie gets a lithium-ion 4kWh battery with nickel-cobalt-aluminium chemistry. This chemistry in the battery ensures a longer life span with high energy density and good specific power. The company claims a real-world driving range of 120km in Eco mode. However, Eco mode feels a bit dull , and the Ride and Rush mode will be frequently used. I have been toggling between Ride and Rush mode, and in both the mode performance was adequate. The throttle calibration is well-judged, and the scooter takes up speed quite linearly.

River Indie use a PMSM mid-mounted motor that drives the rear wheel via a belt drive system. Power and torque numbers are not something to vouch for. It produces 9hp of peak power and 26Nm of peak torque. Well, during my test ride - I never felt the lack of performance, and the way the motor delivers torque is satisfactory. The company says they have restricted the max performance of the motor to increase its reliability and efficiency. 

River calls Indie as ‘ SUVs of Scooter ‘ - and it does feel rugged and built-to-last .During my test ride, I never faced any issues whatsoever, something that is not common by a new-age startup. It uses a steel tubular dual cradle chassis along with the dual-sided aluminium alloy swingarm on which both rear shocks are mounted. On the front, it gets a telescopic suspension unit with hydraulic dampers. Both the suspensions are tuned on a stiffer side, so the potholes or speed breakers can easily be felt. But then you look into its utilitarian quotient, and one needs to keep suspension a bit firmer so that it does not bottom out with all the load in it. In terms of handling, it managed to tackle curves quite well; however, if you lean hard - you might scrape the side of the floorboard. But then again, it’s not a sporty commuter but a utility vehicle. The braking duties are managed by a 240mm disc at the front and a 200mm disc at the rear. The front braking performance, especially on my scooter, was not adequate; however, the rear felt quite sharp. Then I tried other scooters from the lot, and I found the braking performance was quite acceptable. The braking response calibrated with regeneration feels quite natural and responsive. 

As far as the seating position and ergonomics go, the River Indie is spot-on. The handlebar is just high enough to give a comfortable riding position. Along with that, the seat height of 770mm makes it even more suitable for all types of commuters. The seating area is wide, and the foam density and cushion of the seats make it even better. 

TopGear Magazine July 2024