Full-suspension electric kickscooter comes with collision warning system
Oakland-based electric mobility firm Unagi has teamed up with acclaimed industrial designer Yves Behar for a smooth-looking, full-suspension e-kickscoot with AI smarts that warn riders of possible collisions with people or objects.
Unagi rode into the electric micromobility space in 2018 with the launch of the unashamedly stylish Scooter on Kickstarter. And the company has launched another crowdfunding effort, this time on Indiegogo, to raise production funds for what's billed as "the smartest scooter on Earth."
"The Model Eleven is a technological tour de force in innumerable ways," said the company's founder and CEO, David Hyman. "But at its heart, we wanted a scooter that set the bar for portability, power and comfort. We were tired of trade-offs and believe we’ve successfully removed them!"
Unagi has managed to cook an advanced driver-assistance system into the Model Eleven, an adaptation of the kind of tech found in autonomous cars. This sees the onboard sensor and HD camera scan the surroundings and warn of potential dangers, such as upcoming collision hazards, via an integrated audio system and the e-scooter's touchscreen display. The company says that the AI system is able to identify people, vehicles and inanimate objects, as well as stop lights and stop signs.
A partnership with Google has led to the implementation of turn-by-turn navigation in the scoot. Riders just need to punch a destination into an iOS/Android mobile app running on a smartphone. That phone pairs with the Model Eleven and the directions appear on the handlebar display while also offering audio prompts via the built-in speaker, allowing the smartphone to be safely stowed in a pocket while in transit.
And if you know where you're going, so don't need to use the navigation smarts, you can compile a playlist and stream some tunes to the Model Eleven's 15-W speaker over Bluetooth for some rock as you roll.
The folding electric kickscooter has been constructed using long carbon fiber composite to keep the weight down, tipping the scales at 32 lb (14.5 kg), uneven terrain gets smoothed out thanks to quad-arm full elastomer-based suspension, and puncture-proof foam-filled tires can "come off like cartridges" when it's time for a fresh set.
Dual 500-W motors offer a top speed of 20 mph (32 km/h) and the ability to tackle 15-degree inclines. A removable 9,700-mAh battery pack in the deck allows for charging indoors, but also caters for hotswaps if you have a spare in your backpack. Per-charge range is reckoned to be in the region of 15.5 miles (25 km).
Security features include a motion sensor with alarm and GPS tracking with the ability to remotely disable the e-scoot in the event of attempted thievery.
Indiegogo backers can lay down US$1,690 for a Model Eleven with Crash Protect AI, or opt for an early bird without the obstacle warning system for $1,540. If all goes to plan, shipping is estimated to start in June or September 2022, depending on model selected.