I Can’t Tell If This Is Stupid Or Brilliant

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It’s seventy-two pounds and can go 23 miles at 12mph. What makes it interesting, I suppose, is the form factor of the thing. It’s billed as the world’s smallest electric vehicle. And the video is pure Sprockets.

You can check it out here. This strikes me as VHS to the Segway’s Beta: cheaper ($1,599), less ambitious, lower performance, but fulfilling the same basic conditions. I keep thinking there has to be a market for these things besides the guided city tours you see Segways and their awkwardly helmeted riders doing. The problem is, and continues to be, the fact that most people don’t walk far enough to make the hassle of storing and operating the thing worth it. Not to mention the fact that they’re unwieldy in Manhattan foot traffic. There’s a reason there are no crowd shots in this video, and it isn’t because they couldn’t find a crowd in a European city.

Oh, and the fact that you look like a complete tool when you’re riding a one-man upright scooter.

That last part might be more important. We’re social creatures, even those of us who aren’t (raises hand!) and we don’t want to be the only person on the street riding a dorky electric scooter. Maybe if they could get Ryan Gosling to start riding one around. It would have to be someone like him. Using Dwight D. Eisenhower as an endorser set Rolex on the road to riches and success, but in the modern era nobody will admit to admiring a politician unless said politician is someone who defines himself (or herself) by his minority status. And then you’re not really saying that you admire that politician; you’re saying that it’s important for your peers to see how not-racist you are.

Hey, maybe that’s the key to this. Get Mel Gibson to go on a rant about [insert minority here] on scooters. Watch as the SWPLs take to the street in protest. We’re gonna rock down to — Electric Avenue!

7 Replies to “I Can’t Tell If This Is Stupid Or Brilliant”

  1. AvatarDomestic Hearse

    I think I’d rather get a Hoveround and pretend to be impaired. The seat’s nicer. And I’d be tolerated better by urban commuters who find me in their way — either by being ignored by them completely, or getting the occasional sympathetic glance.

    Riding this thing? In Chicago or NYC? Not even on a bet.

    Reply
  2. AvatarLucas

    Hopefully a ton of people buy them so I can get a used one real cheap in a few years to ride around Road Atlanta when I go to races and the Mitty.

    Reply
  3. Avatarsafe as milk

    i vote for stupid. even seqways have very limited practical applications; basically patrolling parking lots. i live in a place where people walk – manhattan – and the preferred sideway scooter is a xooter. i have one and yes i do feel like a dork riding it but you can basically cut the time of most trips in half. you see a fair amount of electric scooters, too. scooters are popular because you can use them on the sidewalk without getting stopped by the cops. you aren’t aloud to bike on the sidewalk. the few times i’ve seen segways, they were on the street or in train stations.

    Reply

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