Smart gives production nod to all-electric escooter
Alongside the smart fortwo electric drive coupé and convertible that appeared at the 2010 Paris Motor Show, smart also unveiled a couple of two-wheeled electric vehicle concepts, the smart ebike and smart escooter. With the ebike having already having received the production nod in 2011 and now nearing its scheduled mid-2012 release, smart has announced plans to bring its smart escooter to market with a planned 2014 launch.
While we can expect the production escooter to share a lot in common with the concept vehicle that was shown in Paris in 2010, smart says it is continuing to further develop and refine the escooter’s design. Whether that means we can expect improvements on the concept’s 45 km/h (28 mph) top speed and 100 km (62 mile) range remains to be seen. But like the smart ebike, smart says the escooter won’t require a license to drive.
Features that are likely to survive the move from concept to production vehicle include an integrated airbag, ABS brakes, and a blind-spot monitoring system. The concept also featured a dock in the center of the handlebars that allows a smartphone to replace the usual instrument cluster and serve as the escooter’s control and communication center, as well as acting as a starter and immobilizer. Whether this makes it to the production version is a little less certain.
Putting its escooter into production means that smart will have a variety of urban mobility vehicle options, ranging from the pedal-powered electric assist e-bike, through the all-electric escooter, up to its smart fortwo electric cars.
“Anyone who thinks of urban mobility has to think of smart,” says Dr. Annette Winkler, the head of smart. “We offer the perfect zero-emissions vehicle for every requirement, and with our products, electric travel is a lot of fun too.”