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2-Wheel Electric Fun On and Off Road: NIU XQi3 Dirt Bike

Twist the throttle and go! The NIU XQi3 is an electric, automatic, lightweight, and powerful dirt bike that is street legal — on local roads, at least.

NIU XQi3 Electric Dirt Bike(Photo/NIU)
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The XQi3 is the first dirt bike from NIU, which is a world leader in two-wheel electric transport. The company has sold over 3 million electric vehicles worldwide since launching its first e-moped in 2015 and is listed on the NASDAQ.

There will be two pretty much identical versions on offer, the XQi3 Wild and XQi3 Street. The only difference is that the Street model is limited to a top speed of 30 mph, where the Wild tops out at 47 mph.

“The NIU XQi3 Dirt Bike is not your typical dirt bike. It is a multi-purpose city adventure bike meticulously crafted to excel in off-road conditions across various terrains, while also being well-equipped to navigate the challenges of urban environments,” says NIU CEO Dr. Yan Li. “With its modern, electric powertrain, it promises a thrilling ride on city streets, dirt trails, or even the open desert.”

NIU XQi3 Electric Dirt Bike

What Makes the NIU XQi3 Interesting?

The XQi3 has a bunch of features that should make it a ton of fun, on road and off. Adjustable suspension at both ends, knobby DOT-approved 19-inch tires, and loads of torque on demand should make it super capable.

NIU XQi3 Electric Dirt Bike

This electric dirt bike offers things like a Bluetooth-enabled screen that can show phone calls and notifications, a USB-C charger, and even a lap time mode and map tracking features so that you can measure your performance. It is also equipped with NFC locking and unlocking technology for extra security, allowing users to unlock and lock the bike with a unique card, or Bluetooth connectivity to the NIU app.

On offer is a bike that can go up to 47 mph and can travel 43.5 miles on a charge. The batteries are swappable, so that range can be extended by bringing another battery along or having a second stashed somewhere. Recharging the battery will take a bit more than 5 hours.

A highlight of this electric dirt bike is the impressive $5,999 price point. You can order one now direct from NIU, or wait until early 2024 and pick one up at your local U.S. NIU dealer.

Yes, you will need a motorcycle license to drive this street-legal electric motorcycle on public roads. No license is required for off-road-only riding.

NIU XQi3 Electric Dirt Bike

NIU XQi3 Specs

  • Top speed: 47 mph (Wild), 30 mph (Street)
  • Max range: 55 miles
  • Peak pWwer: 6,000w (UltraBoost 8,000W)
  • Torque: 263 ft.-lb.
  • Battery: Swappable 72V, 32Ah LG lithium-ion (21,700 cells) (37.5 lbs.) (5.3-hr. charge time)
  • Tires: 19″ off-road DOT certified (70/100-19)
  • Suspension: KKE, rear compression / Rebound & front preload / Rebound adjustments, 200mm front travel & 85mm rear travel
  • Brakes: Disk (220mm front, 203mm rear)
  • Ride modes: Eco, Dynamic, Sport, UltraBoost
  • Max payload: 220.5 lbs.
  • Size: 78.5″ L x 30.9″ W x 40.8″ H
  • Seat height: 34.8″
  • Ground clearance: 10.2″
  • Curb weight: 156.5 lbs.
  • MSRP: $5,999
  • Colors: Purple, Yellow, White, Black
NIU XQi3 Electric Dirt Bike

NIU XQi3 e-Moto Competitors

The established players in this entry level e-moto dirt bike space are Surron and Segway. The Segway is heavily based on the Surron.

Surron offers a number of models worldwide, but seems to only currently offer the Light Bee X model in the U.S. This model is $1,450 less, 33.1 pounds less weight, charges about 2 hours faster, but has 9 miles less range and a battery that offers less peak power than the NIU XQi3. Otherwise, it has pretty similar specs.

The Segway Dirt eBike X260 is $500 more, offers about 20 more miles of range, is 35.2 pounds lighter, but has 78.7 ft.-lb. less torque than the NIU XQi3. Payload, max speed, and other features are very similar.

There are also quite a few other e-dirt-bikes hitting the market — KTM Freeride E-XC, Stark Varg, CAKE Bukk, Graft EO.12, etc., but these are all considerably more expensive (about twice as much money in most cases) and much higher performance machines.

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