Gotway MSuperX Electric Unicycle Review : The ultimate long range cruiser?
31mph on an electric unicycle! If that sounds extreme to you, you aren’t alone. Gotway’s Tesla, Nikola and MSuperX feature huge powerful motors and the batteries to match. In this review we strap on our safety gear, unbox the crowning MSuperX model and put that 100 mile range claim to the test.
Gotway's MSuperX at a glance
- Class-leading 31mph (50km) top speed
- 100 mile (160km) maximum range
- Powerful 2000w (peak) motor
- Massive 1600 Watt Hour battery
- Large, stable 19inch wheel with wide tyre
- Heavyweight 23kg
- 55cm tall, 47cm long and 18cm wide
Chunky, unique looks
Gotway are not afraid to produce bold, uniquely designed products and the MSuperX is a prime example. It’s canted sweeping appearance (asymmetric front-to-back) combined with the vents and side cuts give the unicycle attitude; it looks fast even when standing still. The decision to clad the entire unit in carbon-fibre-style plastic will surely be a divisive one. Up close the texture appears a little low-budget, however the finish has proven tough, resisting the scuffs you are likely to collect from dropping it or loading it in and out of the car.
Translucent windows spread up the front and rear of the body letting the RGB strip LED's shine through, textured leg pads match the direction of the plastic ‘weave’ and gloss black rustproof screws are used throughout. Only the casing screw holes let down an otherwise slick looking unicycle. The styling touches aren’t all for show, those vents cut into the side panels channel air across the battery to cool it.
Folded up, the footplates are finished in a matte high-power silver, complementing the large twin-seven-spoked wheel exposed below, whilst contrasting against the dark bodywork. With the slightly childish RGB lights extinguished (via the companion app) we feel the MSuperX pulls of a great mix of hypercar style high-tech-materials with a futuristic sci-fi finish.
Gotway’s decision not to brand the body is a welcome one. Once those CE and power rating stickers are removed, the only external markings visible are the ‘made in china’ embossings when the footplates are folded.
Metal backed, the folding footplates are faced with both grip tape and rubber inserts to maximise adhesion with your soles. Deployed in their riding position they ‘cant’ inwards by 15° degrees, so that the inside arch of your foot is marginally lower than the outer edge. This minor tilt takes some getting used to but promotes stability. When folded in (they are retained by magnets) the unicycle measures just 24cm in width.
Gotway state the unit has a maximum payload weight of 100kg, but we have had staffers heavier than this riding it around without issue, beyond the obvious hit to range. When inflated correctly the large tyre wall provides a plushy, shock-free ride. With 135mm of footplate clearance the MSuperX can cope with all but the sharpest of fast turns without bottoming out.
Holding it back from a top score in ride comfort is the thin upper side-padding. The slimline, textured appearance is aesthetically pleasing but doesn’t offer enough padding for new riders, our staff finding that it took some getting used to before the insides of your legs were conditioned to suit.
Our largest wheel yet
Fitted with a 19 x 3 inch tyre, this is the largest unicycle wheel that we have tested. The big sidewall offers fantastic comfort both on and off road, just ensure you are running the correct tyre pressures in line with your weight. Inflating is easier than the competition thanks to the large clearance between the base of the shell and the inner rim. If you are used to riding small-wheel unicycles you may find you need to lean more to climb hills but will enjoy the stability that the larger wheel brings when cruising on the flat.
With a wide, slick centre section, the tyre is most suited to concrete or tarmac paths, but the shallow-cut tread shoulders mean it can still provide some grip to deal with dry trails. Exercise caution when attempting anything loose, (especially anything wet) avoiding slippery surfaces such as mud as that powerful motor will quickly spin the tyre up when it loses traction.
As an aside, if you find yourself using the wheel off-road a lot we suggest purchasing Gotway’s MSuperX mudguard. The tiny rubber lip does a great job of keeping the spray off but will need some pilot holes drilled when using the supplied self-tapping screws to fit it, bridging the shell halves.
Powering the unit on
Recessed on a glossy plastic backplate on top of the unicycle is the chromed power button and rubber covered ports. Hold the unit upright on the floor, supporting it via the handle before long-pressing this power button to turn it on. The wheel will beep before self levelling (front to back) at which point it is ready to ride. To turn off, support it via the handle before pressing and holding the power button for around 2 seconds.
Below the power button, underneath a rubber plug is a USB port that can be used to charge your smartphone, GoPro or other accessory. With the unicycle is powered up our tester measured a 1.5amp output @5V.
Charging that huge battery
The MSuperX features a huge 1600Wh (approximately 19000mAh) 84V battery pack, split across both sides of the wheel for balance. With the included standard-rate 84v 1.5 Amp output wall charger, the unicycle takes a rather pedestrian 14 hours to refill the battery from flat.
With the unicycle on a stand, or laid down on the floor, plug the charger into the four-pin connection under the protective rubber cap, ensuring you take note of the keying of the plug. At 170 x 70 x 33mm the charger and power lead are small enough to carry with you. Should you find yourself riding serious distances on a daily basis, consider buying an aftermarket fast charger with a 5Amp output (although regular use of such a device is not recommended).
Lights, handle, action
Sat in a gloss dish on the face of the unicycle is a bright metal-rimmed headlight LED. With the unicycle powered up, double tap the power button to cycle through off, static or flashing modes. The headlight is slightly angled down and throws light ahead to illuminate your path. Its bright enough for use in lit streets and can be switched to a strobe mode should visibility be preferable.
A pair of RGB strip LED’s hide behind the vertically-stacked smoked-windows on both the front and rear of the unit. Tapping the power button will also allow you to cycle through permanently lit or flashing modes for these lights, alternatively their modes can be altered in the application for rainbow cycling and other effects.
Gotway have revised the rear cluster with a baboon-style red-ringed rear running-light surrounding the central 5-LED status light. This central set of LED’s will switch from green to red when braking.
Hidden away on the curving backside of the body is the MSuperX’s extending trolley handle. There is no release or catch button, just lift the matte handle to telescope up the two sections to the top. It parks at a height suitable for most riders to easily dolly the powered-up wheel around, which is something we found ourselves doing more often due to the heavy weight of the unit however, its rear placement can make doing this somewhat clumsy.
With no lift sensor or motor cutoff button (like those found under the handles on InMotion wheels), ensure you have powered down the device before picking it up, or the wheel will spin up. Should you forget, press and hold the power button to power down the wheel or it will rapidly accelerate before hitting its limit, beeping and returning to standby.
Should the wheel fall over it will bleep five times at you and then switch to standby, powering back up when you return it to an upright position.
Gotway smartphone companion application
An accompanying Gotway smartphone app is available for both iOS and Android. Whilst functional, it lacks the polish and bug-free experience of competitor apps such as Ninebot.
The app enables you to monitor the battery levels, energy usage, remaining battery capacity, current journey distance and much more. Tiltback ‘speed limits’ can be configured and headlight modes can be switched from lit to strobing.
Riding ‘modes’ can also be switched between soft, medium and strong. In soft mode the wheel will require more input on the pedals to get it to respond and it will do so gradually, the whole experience is quite ‘sloppy’. More experienced riders will want to switch to strong mode where the wheel will powerfully balance itself, resisting against inputs, but allowing for firm positive motions should the rider commit.
Riding stats can be reviewed with graphs of speed and power usage alongside mainboard, battery and motor temperatures. As with other apps in this vein, Gotway have re-invented it into a social media platform for sharing with others.
Long distance range
The manufacturer's 100 mile (160km) range claim is reported based on a ~90kg rider on flat land, with dry, calm weather at a relatively low speed. Keeping the speed low (around 10mph or less) is the key to maximising the range on any of our personal electric transporters, but even at these speeds we were unable to reach the stated distance.
We feel it is more accurate to consider the wheel a comfortable cruiser suited to journeys of 7-8 miles plus, rather than some sort of long-haul personal transporter for covering serious distances.
The MSuperX is fast, so, so fast. We advise anyone looking to push the envelope in terms of top speed to wear some serious safety gear, you really do not want to fall off at 31mph without it. None of our staff had ridden something quite as powerful before.
Mounting the wheel takes some getting used to, its higher-than-average centre of gravity an odd sensation between your knees. When rolling, the mass is less apparent, leaving you to enjoy the comfortable ride the thick tyre offers. Whilst radiused, the tyre design isn’t ideal for fast cornering where running up on the sidewall can cause it to wash out.
This wheel is most at home on a smooth flowing path, where it will comfortably and confidently cruise along at higher speeds. The angled pedals feel like there is more leverage for carving through turns. Braking performance is admirable for the mass involved and there was little wobble or shake coming down from high speeds.
Whilst ill advised, the powerful torquey motor allows for some wild riding. Not only can it comfortably climb a 20 degree incline, it is possible to descend a set of stairs on the MSuperX without blowing the ESC’s although such tomfoolery will likely void your warranty.
How does the MSuper X compare?
The large footplates are much better for taller riders with bigger feet (who can also take advantage of the power of the unicycle) and the multi-grip finish offers more purchase than those found on the InMotion and Kingsong wheels. It is very easy to take the large stable footprint for granted, switching from the MSuperX back to the InMotion v8 will initially have you weaving away.
Newer riders may initially struggle with minimal (compared to say InMotion’s wheels) side padding on the body which lacks the initial comfort of InMotion’s offerings. Where the Gotway wheel stands out is the range and reliability. With tank-like build quality, our customers have reported little-to-no issues.
Should I buy the MSuperX?
If you want the biggest, most powerful unicycle with the longest range we sell then look no further than the MSuperX. Its price tag is undoubtedly justified for such a powerful machine. We will continue testing it throughout the year so please leave any questions you have in the comments section below.
The MSuperX’s size and weight will not suit smaller riders, those who only need to cover short distances at slower speeds, or those who will need to lug their EUC up and down stairs frequently. If that sounds like your use case, consider picking up an InMotion wheel such as the V8, or if on a budget, the V5F. For an at-a-glance look at of all the unicycles we sell, see our electric unicycle comparison.