The Riptide R1 and R1 Elite has an ideal demographic that would get the most out of this board, it's definitely not anyone living in a moderately hilly area or anyone who wants to ride this board to its maximum range though. Due to the extreme sag it's better to say that this board has a useful range of more like 3.7mi/6km, which puts it bang on par with a standard Boosted board battery (being ridden flat-out from full to empty).
The dual belt drive system doesn't quite deliver the torque you'd expect it to due to the battery/ESC combination that powers the motors. Truthfully any 10s powered hub motor board will be a better performer in the torque department. This is proof that "belts = torque" is not always a true statement.
All that being said, it's a seriously fun board!
The Riptide is a perfect college commuter, beach cruiser or passable local errand runner. As it's powered by a 97Wh battery, it's also an awesome air travel friendly board for those looking for something small and compact to take away with them.
The Riptide is not the board to go for if you're looking for a daily driver to do heavy lifting in a hilly area, or if you're a longer route daily commuter. The short board and below average battery when combined with hilly and/or crappy terrain would not make for a comfortable ride over longer distances. It is for perhaps this reason that the boards overall performance is commensurate with its size?
Unlike a lot of their competitors in the short board market space, Riptide's after sales and customer service appears to be second-to-none! Their website boasts a complete spare parts section where you can purchase every single part individually, complete with all the tools and extras necessary to do your own servicing!
Should you buy one? First consider seriously your own needs and wants. As mentioned earlier, this board is built to suit only a very narrow demographic of potential users. If you fit that demographic then this board may be for you, or, if like me you just enjoy old-school cruisers, then you should definitely check it out!
FUTURE UPDATES AND A CHANGING MARKETPLACE
Since the Riptide's release the competition in the short board marketplace has intensified. Many brands who share some common OEM's with Riptide now have their own 30 inch offerings. However, the competition really went "next level" when Boosted unveiled their Mini S and Mini X boards.
In response to rider feedback and a changing marketplace, Riptide looks set to release its first batch of updates for the R1 and R1 Elite. An upgraded battery option and a new remote and/or ESC (in-keeping with releases from the OEM) seem set for imminent launch.
If the new battery can reduce the sag to something tolerable and maintain the advertised range, this is an important improvement that will keep Riptide in the game. Alternatively, if the new battery pack shifts its focus entirely from "air travel friendly" to "performance and range," giving potential owners those two options to choose from, this would also be a step in the right direction for Riptide.
Read the full review at: https://www.samjadelaide.com/the-riptide-r1-elite-initial-impressions.html