PERFORMANCE: V2 Plus vs. 1.5; Sanyo 8.1Ah vs. Samsung 4.0Ah
These are the results of my real-world performance tests with accompanying commentary.
For the top speed test I'm going to compare the highest achievable top speed of my V2 Plus to the top speed of my 1.5
. This directly compares the new V2/V2 Plus ESC to the old 1.0/1.5 ESC.
For the range test I'm going to compare the real-world range of the Sanyo 20700B (8.1Ah) battery pack with the real-world range of the Samsung 20R 18650 (4.0Ah) battery pack.
For this section please note that I weigh about 198lbs/90kg these days and I ride flat-out as often as possible.Top Speed
- Meepo V2 Plus = 25.04mph/40.3kph in Pro mode
- Meepo 1.5 = 22.8mph/36.7kph in the highest speed mode
The new V2/V2 Plus ESC is 2.24mph/3.6kph faster (top speed) than the previous 1.0/1.5 ESC. It's super impressive that Meepo continues to achieve their advertised top speed in the real-world (they always have).Range
- Sanyo 8.1Ah = 12.05mi/19.4km blended riding in Expert/Pro mode
- Samsung 4.0Ah = 8.2mi/13.3km in the highest speed mode
The Meepo website claims an additional 6.2mi/10km range with the Sanyo battery. However, this is with Keiran as the test rider. Keiran weighs somewhere in realms of 165lbs/75kg. I'm a bit heavier. I only achieved an additional 3.85mi/6.2km with the Sanyo pack. This was with blended mode riding. On straight and flat bitumen (and a few mild hills) I was in Pro mode, but when I had to take care to navigate some of the trickier areas of my route (and for about the last 35% of my ride generally), I was in Expert mode.Hill Climbing
: I took the Meepo V2 Plus (Sanyo) to my local test incline of 15.7% on about 50% battery and it still killed it at nearly full speed (Pro mode)! It would take being below 25% battery and a 20+% incline to have a chance of slowing the board down. However, I do believe the claims of a 30% hill grade capability to be a little bloated. If true, it would have to be a featherweight human on a full battery with a 300m run-up, chewing up half of your battery in the process. Even then...Sag
: The Samsung 4.0Ah battery starts to sag in around the last 15% of its charge. Frankly, I experienced about the same with the Sanyo 8.1Ah battery. Both packs are very good regarding the late onset of battery sag, but the claim of zero (or near zero) battery sag regarding the Sanyo battery is a little exaggerated.HIGHLIGHTS AND LOWLIGHTS (one, the other, or both)Traditional Meepo features (highlights)
: Smart turn on will never get old and is a feature not available with all of the competitors. When I ride other boards without handles these days, I miss them. I blame Meepo for this.The new remote (both):
Although I was a fan (one of a few) of the previous remote, I will happily concede that the new remote is definitely an improvement in terms of quality, ergonomics and functionality. However, I’m not entirely sure it improved enough in the areas that needed it most. The new LED system is fantastic and vastly superior to its nearest rival, but the throw/travel of the throttle and brake roller is about the same as the previous remote, which really could have done with a couple of extra mm either side.Pro mode (both)
: The new ESC’s forth speed mode and higher top speed has simultaneously made this board both slower and faster than its predecessor. Let me explain: Yes, the Meepo V2/V2 Plus does indeed reach a higher top speed than the 1.5 and even its current competitors, but by spreading the available performance over four speed modes it also weakens the performance of each mode. Thus, the first three speed modes (Beginner, Eco and Expert) all feel comparatively lower in performance compared to the Meepo 1.5. Only the fourth speed mode (Pro) delivers a level of performance close to what previous and current Meepo 1.5 riders are familiar with.
There’s a couple of points of view to consider here. One is that the V2/V2 Plus is a backwards step in bottom end performance compared to the 1.5, but the counter-argument is that the V2/V2 Plus still performs better in both bottom and top end performance when compared to its nearest competitors. Another way to look at it is that the Meepo is now more beginner friendly than it ever has been. The first three speed modes are gradual, smooth and make for an easy introduction to esk8ing for beginners. Expert (and to a lesser extent, Eco) are also great cruising modes. I’d be pretty disappointed though if that’s all there was. If Meepo was reduced to a “beginners only” board by curtailing the modes too far towards the “gentle” end of the spectrum, I’d have to concede to calling the V2/V2 Plus neutered compared to the 1.5. But alas, Pro mode exists, and although its existence cuts the first three modes off at the knees, it redeems things in the fourth!Value for money (highlight)
: It’s hard to fault what you get for your money here. A 38 inch V2 Plus isn’t just a sub-$500 USD board, it’s damn near a sub-$400 USD ($419 USD) board at the time of writing this, which includes delivery to most countries!Deck (lowlight)
: Despite the deck being vastly improved since the days of the convex 1.0, the sheer amount of people still doing deck swaps suggests improvements can still be made here. I agree. There needs to be a little more rebound. Re-introduce a bit of bow/arch to the deck, or even better, introduce an optional bamboo deck upgrade at the point of purchase and it will improve the board ten-fold.Braking (lowlight)
: Almost all braking is more aggressive at low speed in the world of esk8, but the V2/V2 Plus ESC is particularly noticeable in this regard.Micro-seizures (lowlight)
: I mentioned this during my 1.0 to 1.5 review
. These micro-seizures still seem to be a persistent issue, even with the new ESC. I will say, however, they appear to be softer, less intrusive/abrupt and less frequent. Why they occur at all is a matter the OEM needs to look into as a matter of priority.CONCLUSION/TL;DR
Once upon a time getting a board at this price-point meant sacrificing a lot, be that having to accept a crappy deck, non-replaceable urethanes, a sub-par remote, laughable top speed, pitiful range or ride-crippling battery sag once you hit the 50% mark. With all of the improvements made from the original Meepo right through to the V2 Plus, now you’re not sacrificing much of anything at all! A deck swap might still be on the cards for some, but this hasn’t been “essential” since the 1.5. The new generation of Meepo boards arrive on your doorstep as complete and polished products right out of the box!
With that in mind, I find a board this feature-packed and spec-rich at such a low price-point hard to fault. Yes, there are still some grey areas regarding overall durability, reliability and longevity worth pointing out, but it all has to be taken into account in light of the budget price tag. If the durability, reliability and longevity question marks were to be put to rest with Boosted-level solutions, then you’d forgive Meepo for starting to charge something close Boosted-level prices. The price is lower here for a reason…
My Meepo V2 Plus (Sanyo) performed to my expectations with regards to top speed, range (there or thereabouts) and hill climbing. The Sanyo battery isn't, however, "sag-less" and the new generation ESC removes a lot of performance from the first three speed modes and saves all of it almost exclusively for the forth (Pro) speed mode.
Is the Sanyo 8.1Ah battery worth the cost? Well, it's only an extra $180 USD to upgrade to the Sanyo battery at the point of purchase. $180 USD for 4 more miles/6 more km (which will increase the lighter you are and the less aggressively you ride) and a much, much longer shelf-life! In my opinion the extra $180 USD is worth it for the shelf-life alone; up to 3000 cycles compared to the Samsung's 300 cycles, plus you get a bit of extra range as a bonus. The cost of $255 USD as a separate purchase is a little harder to justify. If you're going to do it, do it straight-up.
Meepo continues to offer solid, entry-level esk8 options with the V2/V2 Plus generation of boards, particularly with how cruisy the first three speed modes are now. It's also a solid board for someone looking for a Boosted alternative (Pro mode is for you) without the price tag, but is willing to trade proprietary parts for generic ones, belts for hubs and a difference in durability, reliability and longevity in-keeping with the difference in price.Link to original post. https://www.samjadelaide.com/meepo-v2-plus-