We've covered many folding electric scooters over recent years, from slim stand-up designs to larger sit-atop models. The all-new Relync R1 takes a different form than most with a three-wheel, sit-down chassis that folds instantly and packs down to suitcase size. The scooter uses its smart, versatile design and connectivity features to make urban mobility as painless as can be.
Relync set out to make a scooter that's not only functional but stylish, looking to classic 1960s race cars for inspiration. It hasn't exactly created the next Ferrari 275 GTB/C, but the R1 definitely has a compact, modern look that should prove more appealing than the typical utilitarian mobility scooter. It looks more CES urban transporter, less medical supply store discount scooter.
The company believes that styling will be key to attracting both customers who rely on mobility to overcome physical limitations and those who just want a light, practical transporter for getting around town.
"More than 8.2 million people rely on mobility devices across the UK, Europe and the USA, but most mobility scooters available are too bulky, unpractical, get stuck on turns and rough surfaces, and are not at all aesthetically pleasing," Relync designer Julien Gueuning said when the R1 was introduced. "Bringing together form and function was one of our goals, because we believe that mobility doesn't simply have to be practical, it can be beautiful and fashionable as well."
Relync has gone well beyond just creating a prettier scooter, focusing on giving the R1 the functionality it needs to bring more convenience to owners' lives. In place of a bulky, heavy rigid chassis, the scooter relies on a multi-fold design that takes mere seconds to pack up into transport size. The seat post folds down, and the base platform folds in half, creating an easy-roll trolley. The handlebar tube can also compact down, further shrinking the R1 into a clean, compact suitcase-like package.
The R1 weighs 55 lb (25 kg) with batteries and measures 19.7 x 23.4 x 10.5 in (500 x 594 x 266 mm) when folded. Aluminum, plastic and nylon-enforced ABS construction ensures a proper blend of strength and low weight.
A front-mounted motor keeps things rolling up to 18.5 miles (30 km) with power from the dual 209-Wh batteries. The scooter tops out at 8 mph (13 km/h) and relies on a dual rear suspension system to gobble up bumps. Foot-operated front/rear disc braking makes for quick stops, and a gyroscope system keeps speed in check on hills and curves. The scooter rides on a pair of 12-in pneumatic tires at the rear and an 8-in pneumatic tire up front.
The R1's LED dashboard computer provides turn-by-turn navigation and data display, while a smartphone app provides added features, including GPS/GPRS tracking, theft alert and locking. To keep that smartphone charged, riders can tap into the Relync's batteries through a USB charging port.
For night commuting, the R1 has LED headlights with four intensity settings. The scooter also includes running lamps, indicating lights, brake lights and reverse lights.
Relync introduced the R1 at CES 2018, where it won an Innovation Award. It plans to get it to market in July of this year for a retail price of US$3,600 with the dual-battery pack.
The video below shows the R1 folding, unfolding, and traveling the streets under its own power, in a car trunk and being rolled by its owner.
Want a cleaner, faster loading and ad free reading experience?
Try New Atlas Plus. Learn more