We've seen plenty of cargo bikes, a few electric cargo scooters and a number of luggage-hauling kick scooters, but general cargo kick scooters? Not so many. In fact, if you scour the internet for such a vessel, your search will likely be dominated by one company: California's Nimble Scooters, which is now launching the new "Urban" cargo scooter, a design that's smoother, lighter and more versatile than its original Classic. The new scooter takes short trips while carrying more than 50 lb (23 kg) of gear or goods.
Nimble launched its original Classic scooter a few years ago, providing the market with a unique blend of cargo bike utility and kick scooter simplicity and affordability. Unlike something like the Scuddy scooter, the Classic doesn't have a motor – or the attached price or weight. You can pick one up for a retail price of US$299 and give yourself a little extra wheeling and hauling power for short trips around the city or neighborhood.
While an intriguing blend of cargo capacity, simple operation and affordability, the original Classic isn't necessarily the cleanest design out there. Its fixed 18-gal (68-L) cargo tub makes it rather large for storing or transporting. The T-bar appears to be mounted vertically and doesn't look as ergonomic as it'd be with a bit more lean (though we haven't actually tested it out).
Based around Classic customer feedback for something smaller, lighter and more versatile, Nimble designed the new Urban, a cleaner kick scooter platform for your cargo-hauling pleasure. Nimble calls it its best scooter yet, and it seems the company realized that the Classic's design is a bit large and bulky for the small apartments and public transportation of the city, one of the environments where you'd be most likely to want a cargo scooter in the first place.
The Urban is designed to shine in small urban spaces. In place of the big HDPE tub, the Urban comes with a custom 12 x 12-in (30 x 30-cm) flat rack that you can use to carry cargo directly or secure a box, bag, basket or other carrier to better accommodate your load. The scooter even comes with a bungee cord for securing carriers or cargo to the rack. The Urban can also be ordered with a bicycle rack so you can use standard bicycle accessories like panniers and baskets.
The scooter folds up for easy storage, transport in your car trunk and rides on public transportation. It doesn't compact quite as much as standard kick scooters with fully folding handlebars, but the rider platform swings underneath the front frame, dropping length from 52 to 34 in (132 to 86 cm). The handlebars adjust between 38 and 24 in (97 and 61 cm), accommodating riders up to 6-foot 4-in (1.9 m).
Nimble imagines the Urban being used for short trips of a mile or two (1.6 to 3.2 km), trips it thinks of as "too far to walk but not far enough to be worth taking a car or bike." It states that the Urban will be perfect for cruising university campuses, picking up local produce at the farmer's market, rolling through office buildings and more.
The Urban has a steel frame, linkage front-wheel steering system, foot-activated rear flex brake and kickstand. It weighs around 30 lb (13.6 kg). A built-in locking loop on the handlebar tube ensures that you can lock it up with ease.
Nimble has turned to Indiegogo for help raising the funds it needs to purchase tooling for its California production facility and parts for the new scooter. It is offering the basic Scooter with flat rack for pledge levels starting at $149 (40 percent off the projected $249 retail), a model with bicycle rack and flat rack for $229 (vs. $269 retail), and a model with wicker basket and flat rack for $239 (vs $279). All models include the bungee cord and come in buyer's choice of glossy white or matte black. The company expects to begin shipping in July, if everything pans out.