Pint-size electric snowmobile doubles as a scooter
Even though many outdoorsy parents may be eager to get their kids snowmobiling, a big, heavy, fast snow machine may not be the best thing to put under the control of a small child. That's where the tiny, light and relatively slow Naseka comes in. It's electric, and can be utilized year-round.
Invented by Montreal-based engineer Aleksei Naseko, the Naseka is intended for use by children aged 7 to 12 years old – its maximum load capacity is 80 kg (176 lb).
The steel-framed snowmobile itself tips the scales at 60 lb (27 kg), and has an 800-watt brushless motor that's powered by a lithium-ion battery pack. One charge of that battery should reportedly be good for a range of about 14 km (9 miles), taking riders to a top speed of 12 km/h (7.5 mph) and up slopes as steep as 35 degrees.
To use the Naseka, riders just insert and turn its power key, then twist the throttle. A bar-mounted LCD screen displays the battery charge level, along with the current speed. Front and rear shocks help smooth out the ride.
And once the snow melts, it can continue to be used, by swapping its ski for an included front wheel. That said, given that traction is still provided by the rear rubber tread, we're not too sure what sort of effect it might have on grass or other sensitive surfaces.
Naseko has turned to Indiegogo, to finance production of the vehicle. A deposit of CAD$268 (about US$200) will get you on the list for one, going toward a total campaign-only price of US$1,210. The estimated retail price is $1,730, assuming it reaches production.
You can see the Naseka in use, in the following video. And if you're trying to get your tykes into dirt-biking, you might want to instead check out STACYC's off-road electric balance bike.