NEWS

Adult Electric Scooters Come Of Age

Sunday 26 May 2019, 10:17PM
By Jonno Leonard
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AUCKLAND

You will no doubt have noticed the emergent use of the electric scooter as a mode of transport of choice in our cities, a trend built on the convergence of multiple technologies.

Back in the day, the kids kick-scooter started it all, and there was a short-lived trend of adults embracing the kick scooter as a commuting tool, but ultimately going to work on the same thing your kids rode to school was seen as somewhat silly. And silly doesn't sell, at least not in big numbers. 

Fast forward a few years and lithium-ion battery technology has provided power packs that can support a reasonable journey, and high-torque electric motors have become miniaturised to the scale required. Scooters capable of ferrying a full-sized adult at reasonable speed over a reasonable distance are born, and suddenly a new marketplace has developed, seemingly overnight.

But in the background, 2 leading companies have been working tirelessly on what has been anything but 'overnight' success. Inokim and Minimotors have taken 2 different design directions, and occupy 2 different top-of-market positions.

Inokim hails from Tel Aviv in Israel, and produce a polished, premium product. In business since 2009, their range extends from the built-for-teens Mini to the mighty OX, an e scooter that has rewarded their high-end aspirations with being awarded the prestigious Red Dot Design Award. In the battle for best adult electric scooter, this could be a winner.

But consider MiniMotors. Established in 1999, MiniMotors market under the Speedway and Dualtron brands, and take an altogether more direct approach to market domination. With the exception of the excellent entry-level Speedway scooters, MiniMotors have developed their Dualtron brand to deliver the highest performance available for a scooter worldwide. Their latest Gen3 Thunder model produces a pant-wetting 5400watts of peak power and is reckoned to be good for 90km/h. The kids' scooter has come a long, long way!

Office heroes around the country are enthusiastically embracing the challenge of who has the best electric scooter, and hitting the electric scooter shop to secure themselves a head-turning ride that shortens their commute, while making them look, well, kinda cool!

Since the advent of the Lime Scooter and Bird Scooter rideshare schemes has destigmatized scootering, many many people have woken up to the benefits of using an electric scooter for a work commute, or just for fun on the weekends. Cities worldwide are working scootering into their city planning and adopting charging and parking schemes to make the new technology work for them.

One thing is certain, e-scooters are here to stay. Perhaps its time to jump on board?