Future Motion says its new OneWheel+ XR hoverboard does away with ‘range anxiety’
We’ve talked quite a bit about Future Motion’s Onewheel hoverboard here on Digital Trends, including chatting with the company’s (then beardless) CEO Kyle Doerksen during last year’s live coverage. Kyle and Future Motion have returned to the DT CES booth for 2018, this time showing off the new Onewheel+ XR.
As we mentioned earlier this week, the biggest upgrade on the XR is its range. Riders will get between 12-18 miles per charge, which is more than double the range of the previous model. Doerksen says this is the result of a complete rework of the Onewheel’s battery system, which now uses new NMC battery cells — and more of them.
While the new model does boast significantly more battery capacity, the overall thickness of the board grew by only a few millimeters. Doerksen says this is the result of significant advancements in battery cell technology, thanks largely to research and development driven by the electric car industry.
Doerksen used to ride the original Onewheel+ to and from work on a daily basis, but he could do so without issue due to the fact he lives only two miles from company headquarters. Most people live significantly further from their place of work — closer to the original five- to seven-mile range of the previous model.
“Range anxiety is a real concern for electric vehicle users,” he says, and he hopes the extended range of the XR will promote wider use. Whereas earlier models competed with walking, the XR makes longer trips feasible, and further cements these types of rideables as legit commuter vehicles rather than expensive toys.
To that extent, Future Motion completed Tueseday evening a relay that took a team of riders on a single Onewheel going from from Los Angeles to Las Vegas over three days to show off the XR’s capabilities. Unfortunately due to heavy rain in southern California and the Las Vegas area, relay riders weren’t able to make Future Motion’s appearance on our livestream but did end up arriving at CES a bit late and a bit wet.
While you might be getting excited about getting a Onewheel of your own, you might want to temper that just a bit unless you have some fairly deep pockets. The XR will retail for $1,800, and the Onewheel+ is still $1,500 — the same price it was when it debuted last year.
Hopefully the next time we see Kyle and Future Motion, the price will be at a point that average consumers can afford.