Rider Guide’s Editor-in-Chief is a seasoned expert in the electric scooter industry. With a wide-ranging background that includes managing scooter warehouses, selling thousands of motorcycles, and restoring high value (+1M) European sports cars, his expertise is unmatched. Having personally tested more than 100 electric scooters, he offers invaluable insights and recommendations to our readers. We are fortunate to have him as part of our team, as his diverse skill set and extensive experience ensure top-notch reviews.
Apollo’s lightest and most affordable scooter, the Apollo Air, just got 5 more upgrades for less than $150 more. The Apollo Air 2023 also becomes the first scooter to get a Rider Guide-certified reliability score.
The Apollo Air has been a favorite since the first edition, and it’s only gotten better with subsequent versions. Now, with the 2023 model, we get 5 more upgrades that give the Apollo Air an ultra-smooth, more intuitive, and slightly more thrilling ride.
The electric scooter corners the market for new riders looking for a premium first scooter or someone looking to upgrade from their run-of-the-mill scooter to something better that’s not exactly overpowered. It feels like riding the ultra-plush Apollo Pro in a much smaller frame and at nearly a quarter of the Pro’s price.
This article gives you a detailed overview of the latest upgrades and features of the 2023 model of the Apollo Air scooter.
Apollo Air 2023 Review Summary
Our Take: Apollo's Lightweight and Affordable Version of their Ultra-luxury Apollo Pro E-scooter
The Apollo Air has always been really easy to ride, mostly due to the motorcycle-style front suspension and because both the throttle and regen brakes are ultra smooth. But for 2023, it picks up a more high-end feel, with new features from the flagship Apollo Pro in a 41.4-lb package, costing only $999.
The Apollo Air has 5 major upgrades–starting with the handlebars. The bars are cleaner, with a small central display and 2 control buttons on either side. They feature the same improved grips we saw on the Apollo Pro scooter–the grips lock in place for improved control. The bars also come with the improved throttle and regen brake that are generally easier and more comfortable to use.
The bar ends have high-mounted turn signals installed. The turn signals are visible from the front and back, they are self-canceling, and they have easy-to-access buttons on either side of the handlebars. You also have a new adjustable headlight that shoots 500 lumens down the path for low-light visibility.
The electric scooter has a stronger folding mechanism and a redesigned folding latch. The folding mechanism is visibly larger, sturdier, and easier to operate. The stem is secured by more fasteners, which leads to a more solid feel. And when folded, the latch has a keeper that prevents accidental unlatching.
The last major upgrade is the self-sealing tubeless tires. The 10-inch tires are slightly larger than the 2022 Air’s, with an improved tread pattern for enhanced traction. That aside, the tubeless nature makes them less susceptible to pinch flats, while the pre-installed sealant bonds any punctures, preventing pressure loss and ensuring that your rides are as worry-free as possible.
The electric scooter also retains some of the things we loved about the former’s version, like the motorcycle-style front fork suspension, the IP66 rating, the app connectivity, the lightweight frame, and the relatively affordable price tag. It’s hard to beat the premium offerings you get with the Apollo Air 2023 at the price and weight, and we’ll get into the details to see just how much more you can expect from this scooter, including performance numbers and the all-new reliability score.
Is It Good for Bigger, Heavier Riders?
Unfortunately, the Apollo Air 2023 is not an ideal scooter for heavy adult riders.
Right from the max rider weight capacity, the Apollo Air is restricted to carrying a light load, capping the payload at 220 lbs. We always advise riders to abide by these guidelines as they consider how much weight a scooter can safely carry without compromising the integrity of the frame, motor, and other components.
That said, for riders within the limit, the deck space is okay, the handlebars are tall enough, the front fork suspension and 10-inch tubeless tires deliver on ride comfort, and the Samsung battery is power-packed for short round commutes.
Here are our top recommendations if you need a scooter for heavy adult riders.
Apollo Air Review
Braking Distance (15 to 0 mph)
0 to 15 mph
0 to 20 mph
0 to 25 mph
0 to 30 mph
0 to 35 mph
0 to 40 mph
The Apollo Air 2023 is a single 5000-watt motor electric scooter. The power from the rear hub motor is sufficient for the intended market for the Apollo Air, which is beginner and casual riders. During our testing, Paul got a 5.4-second time from a standing start to 15 mph, which is 0.2 seconds faster than we got from last year’s Apollo Air.
The power specs remain unchanged, but the Apollo Air 2023 does come with Apollo’s more efficient thumb throttle, which probably explains this improvement in acceleration. During our first impressions video, Mitchell remarked that even at full throttle on the 2022 model, Paul, riding the 2023 Air e-scooter, was able to pull away.
How fast is the new Apollo Air e-scooter? Apollo indicates a top speed of 21 mph. Our hands-on testing with a 165 lb rider on flat ground gave us a respectable max speed of 20.6 mph. So, fairly accurate, we’d say.
The Apollo Air 2022 model registered a top speed of 19.9 mph against the manufacturer’s spec of 22 mph. The Apollo Air scooters may not feel fast enough for expert riders–but both scooters are within the curve for what scooters of this weight, and at this price, register as top speed.
For perspective, the OKAI Neon Pro has a top speed of 20.5 mph, the NIU KQi3 Max goes as fast as 22 mph, the Unagi Voyager registered a max speed of 19.5 mph, and the new Gotrax G5‘s top speed is 18.9 mph.
Is the Apollo Air a good hill climber? Traditionally, single-motor scooters aren’t the best at climbing hills. Therefore, you can’t expect a super fast accent from the Apollo Air. That said, the e-scooter will climb a vast majority of city hills with no issue.
We put both the Apollo Air 2022 and Air 2023 on our steep 200 ft, 10% grade test. The Apollo Air 2023 beat the 2022 model to the top, arriving in 18.1 seconds, against the latter’s 18.6 seconds. For riders wanting a good hill climber that’s still lightweight, none beats the dual-motor Unagi Voyager.
Range and Battery
Performance-wise, the most significant upgrade on the Apollo Air is the e-scooter’s range. Ridden in max performance mode, aka Sport Mode, on our hilly range test course, the 2023 Apollo Air scooter made a 22.4-mile trip before needing a recharge. The 2022 model was only able to go 19.5 miles.
Both the 2022 and 2023 Apollo Air e-scooters carry a 36 V, 15 Ah, 540 Wh battery. The difference, however, is that the new Apollo Air is equipped with a Samsung-branded battery with energy-dense 21700 cells. These cells provide a higher energy capacity, allowing the 2023 model to achieve a longer range than its predecessor.
Additionally, the Samsung battery offers improved durability and reliability, ensuring consistent performance throughout the scooter’s lifespan, i.e., longer battery life.
The hot topic for all of Apollo’s new scooters is definitely their preference for drum brakes. All the 2023 releases, including our recently reviewed Apollo City Pro and what is possibly the best electric scooter 2023, the Apollo Pro, have this choice of brakes.
Why choose drum brakes over disc brakes? Here’s Apollo’s reasoning:
While discs offer more grip, they are also quite laborious to maintain. On electric scooters, compared to bicycles, the brakes are a lot closer to the ground and get a lot more water, dust, and dirt on them. Having a sealed system will make them last a lot longer, and it’s way easier to adjust for most people. Furthermore, the brake pads are just so much thicker they will probably last the life of the scooter. If you add the regen throttle on top of that, then there is really no need for disc brake.
That said, the front drum brake on the 2023 model feels different. It now looks and feels a bit more like the one from the Ninebot Max. We got a longer stopping distance than the 2022 model, coming to a halt from 15 mph in 13.7 ft, vs the previous model’s 10.4 ft. We’d love it if it were shorter. However, given that the scooter doesn’t ride to an insane top speed and how easy it is to apply either the regen or mechanical brakes, we feel the scooter’s braking will not be that big of a downside.
The Apollo Air has remained popular, largely thanks to the amazing ride quality you get for the scooter’s weight and price. The ride is ‘just so smooth,’ to quote Paul. And the 2023 model feels even more comfortable to ride thanks to the scooter’s original blueprint and a few upgrades we’ll discuss here.
The strong aluminum frame, as always, is strong enough to handle the rigors of daily commuting without feeling like you’re riding a kid’s electric scooter. The stem is sturdier, with more sets of screws in place for a perfectly solid ride. Riders also get a slightly wider deck, allowing better shifting of riding stances, especially for adult riders.
The motorcycle-style front forks also provide superior suspension and absorb shocks from uneven surfaces, ensuring a smoother and more enjoyable riding experience. It’s incredibly smooth and dead silent, too. But that’s also courtesy of the now tubeless 10-inch tires on the Apollo Air, with a slightly wider tire width to ensure an even more stable and balanced ride. The wider tire width, plus the Segway-style tread pattern, increases traction and grip on various terrains, enhancing the overall control and maneuverability of the Apollo Air.
The ride ergonomics are Apollo-level good, especially for an entry-level scooter. The handlebars are tall at 40.5 inches, and the scooter gets 0.2 inches more clearance (4.0 inches) to allow better rolling over obstacles. The grips on the handlebars also now lock in place, which means less arm fatigue when riding.
The final culprit for the improved ride quality is the smooth feeling throttle and regen. The 2023 iterations of the thumb levers for regen and throttle have a nicer shape and a more high-end feel than the previous versions. Apollo says they put the throttle through 300,000 thousand push tests, against the industry standard of 100,000 tests, to ensure its reliability.
Apollo Air 2023 Features
The Apollo Air is Apollo’s lightest e-scooter offering, with a tested weight of 41.4 lbs. The scooter’s lightweight nature is ideal for regular commuters and people who have to carry their scooters over a distance or some flights of stairs. The Apollo Air 2022 weighed less at 38.8 lbs; however, 2.6 lbs is an agreeable tradeoff for the stronger frame and stem, the new turn signals, and the gel inside the tires.
As for storage, the scooter’s wide handlebars make it a tight squeeze in small spaces like a car trunk or closet. And since no one at the moment does folding bars ideally well at this price end, we’d probably forego them for the stability of non-folding bars despite the increased dimensions.
The Apollo Air has a cleaner-looking cockpit. The central display is small and easy to read in bright sunlight. It shows all the essentials, from speed, battery level, riding mode, and odometer. There’s no control button on the display–that has been replaced with 4 new buttons evenly shared on the two ends of the bars.
The left bar gets the ‘M’ button that, oddly enough, doesn’t change your riding mode—instead, the button toggles between headlights on and off. Double-clicking the M button toggles from total miles to the current trip meter. On the right side, you get the power button. When the scooter is on, double-clicking this button will change your riding mode. Finally, on either side of the bars, you get the Apollo Air scooter’s new turn signal buttons.
Can you ride the Apollo Air e-scooter in the dark? Yes. Apollo has installed a comprehensive lighting package on the Air e-scooter. At the front, you have an adjustable 500-lumen headlight that’s handly in low light conditions. However, we’d recommend purchasing a stronger after-market headlight if you’re primarily riding in the dark. The scooter also comes standard with a reactive taillight that also doubles as a braking indicator.
Finally, the Apollo Air, like the City Pro and the Apollo Pro 2023, comes with bar-end turn signals. This is our favorite new trend, as turn signals just make more sense when they are visible from the front and back. The ones on the Apollo Air electric scooter are self-canceling despite them being very hard to ignore. The twist caps over the turn signal lights are also quite easy to replace should the need arise.
The tires on the new Apollo Air scooter are 10-inch, like the 2022 model. However, the tires are now wider, at 2.4 inches, and feel significantly better on the road. They are tubeless, which means they are less likely to get pinch flats. On the same note, the tires are also pre-slimed, ensuring that they have an added layer of protection against punctures.
The deck on the new Apollo Air electric scooter is standard for this class of scooters. You get 19.5 inches by 7.8 inches of standing space, which is a little more than you had on the Air 2022. The deck also sits a little higher than the previous model at 4.0 inches. Apollo, however, retained the grippy Apollo-branded rubber mat that covers the deck. The rubber mat makes it relatively easy to clean the deck, especially given the IP66 rating that allows the scooter to take on a bit of water.
The Apollo Air 2023 feels like a trickle-down of our favorite things from the Apollo Pro in a lighter, more affordable package. Most of these features were also present on the new Apollo City Pro-so it’s safe to call this the entry-level bundle, with cost savings and reduced performance and capability.
Starting with the unboxing, you have the same Apollo-branded phone holder that came with the Apollo City and Pro versions. It bolts on quickly and is handy for using the App when riding. You also get an over-the-top tool kit, a pump, a valve extender, the obvious charger, and a set of spares for all the fasteners used on the Air Scooter. Apollo has done this with all their 2023 scooters and also includes a map on the manual that identifies and shows where every screw goes for ease of repair and convenience of repurchase.
Moving on to the electric scooter .The Apollo Air has the same grips we first saw on the Pro. They lock into place on both ends and are super grippy and super soft. Mitchell could not stop raving about them on his maiden ride, and Paul says they are “Literally [his] favorite round-shaped grips right now.”
On the left, you have the same mechanical brake lever we saw on the 2022 model, which controls the front drum and rear regen brake. Next to the lever is a ‘ding ding’ kind of bell. Unfortunately, it’s not loud enough for cars to hear you, but it is perfect for interacting with bikes and pedestrians, which is good since this scooter more or less lives in the bike lane.
Now, the Air wouldn’t be Apollo without the dedicated regen brake lever–it’s the thumb lever you see on the right side of the handlebar. The regen is the main brake you end up using because it feels easier and better than using the mechanical brakes; plus, it recharges your battery. And before we move on from the bars, the Apollo Air gets end-mounted turn signals, with buttons conveniently located on the corresponding sides.
The stem gets a new latch that’s again borrowed from the Apollo Pro. It’s an absolute beast that looks better and, of course, works better. There’s no comparison with what we had on the 2022 mode. In addition, when you fold the stem down, there’s a new keeper on the stem-to-deck latch to keep it connected. And, if you happen to have some grocery bags when riding, the latch makes for a great bag hook.
The cockpit is cleaner, with a small display and four control buttons on the bars. The battery now uses Samsung 21700 battery cells, some of the highest-quality cells you’ll see in an electric scooter. And finally, the electric scooter is IP66 rated, making this an all-year scooter, as you can afford to get caught up in the rain.
Now, does the Apollo Air 2023 have an app? Yes. The Apollo Air connects to Apollo’s app, and we’ll take you through the capabilities you can expect.
The Apollo Air 2023's App Capabilities
It’s not by chance that Apollo includes a phone mount with the electric scooter–they know that most riders will want to access the app. It’s one of the most complete apps, and here’s what you get access to:
- Battery percentage and miles remaining: Paul noted (though) that during the range test, the app displayed the remaining range based on ECO riding mode, regardless of what mode he was on.
- Switch between zero-start and kick-to-start
- Acceleration and braking intensity: especially handy for new riders, who might benefit from having the settings dialed down.
- Cruise control activation: riders also get to set how many seconds of sustained speed they prefer before the e-scooter automatically switches to cruise control. New riders should get the hang of riding before getting excited about the cruise function because even the best ones can catch you by surprise.
- Trip histories and ride statistics
- Check on the battery and see the exact voltage.
- Switch between riding modes, to Comfort, ECO, or Sport. However, you can also set custom speed limits, from as low as you want to the scooter’s top speed, outside of the defined speed modes.
The Apollo Air 2023 Upgrade Kit.
For Apollo Air 2022 owners, there’s good news. Apollo has an upgrade kit available that can turn your 2022 model into essentially the 2023 version. The kit includes an upgrade for the handlebars, which means you get the new bar end turn signals, upgraded throttle, regen levers, the retaining clip on the latch, awesome-feeling grips, and the adjustable headlight.
Is the Apollo Air electric scooter a safe scooter? Yes. It has all the basic safety features, including a strong set of brakes, with a dedicated regen brake lever in case the mechanical brakes fail, a comprehensive lighting package, complete with turn signals, and grippy bars and deck for enhanced stability and control.
The electric scooter is also IP66-rated, meaning you can afford to get caught up in the rain. Apollo also includes temperature sensors in the motor and controllers as a safeguard against overheating. With these safety features in place, riders can have peace of mind knowing that the Apollo Air electric scooter prioritizes their safety while on the road.
We have a new section that we intend to incorporate in every scooter moving forward, and that’s the reliability score.
Reliability Score for the Apollo Air: 9.1 out of 10
You can check out the details on how we’re scoring the scooters in a soon-to-be-released video. For now, we can tell you that our scoring index considers things like warranty, IP rating, battery brand, type of tires and brakes, the availability of spare parts, and many other factors. Over time, we also plan to integrate some long-term testing as well and will update the scores on the Rider guide website.
We’re feeling very confident with Apollo’s shift to a 10,000 Km ((6,214 miles) warranty on their frames, as warranty is often a reflection of the trust a company has in their product. By offering a longer warranty on the frame, Apollo is demonstrating their belief in the durability and quality of their product.
They also thoroughly outline the coverage restrictions for other parts–with all other major components covered for one 12 months from the date of purchase. Ensure to go through the warranty to understand the specific terms and conditions, as it will help you make informed decisions and know what to expect in case of any issues or repairs.
Apollo Air Review Conclusion
The Apollo Air is the kind of scooter you can confidently recommend to beginner riders or riders looking for a reliable, daily commuting partner. It is light enough to carry over distances, it is easy and intuitive to ride, it delivers a comfortable ride, the performance is great for the class of scooters, and the Apollo Air is the kind of scooter you actually want to be seen on.
With the new upgrades, you’ll have to spend about $150 more over the 2022 model’s cost. However, the new bars, the high-mounted turn signals, the stronger frame and stem, the self-sealing tubeless tires, the upgraded throttle and regen levers, and the slightly increased dimensions all make the Apollo Air even more appealing and worth the extra investment.
We’ll give you links to the latest pricings below–using them helps support us in writing more of these reviews. We also have a coupon code: RIDERGUIDE for 50% off the 2023 Air and all Apollo models. And with that, we hope this review has been instrumental in helping you settle on the Apollo Air 2023 as your next commuter electric scooter.
Apollo Air 2023 Manufacturer Specifications
|Folded dimensions||47.5 by 26 by 23.5 in|
|Motor power, continuous||500 W|
|Top speed||21 mph|
|Battery capacity||540 Wh|
|Battery recharge time||5 to 7 hrs|
|Max rider weight||220 lb|
|Brake type||Drum + Regenerative|
|Tire type||10.0 in Pneumatic (Inner Tube) + Pneumatic (Inner Tube)|
|Built-in lights||Front + Rear|
Apollo Air 2023 Alternatives & Competitors
For those of you who are comparison shopping, here are the four closest Apollo Air 2023 competitors Rider Guide has tested.