Mercedes’ Smart brand has had its starts and stumbles in the US market, but it’s finding a niche among the alternative transportation crowd that just wants to get around town and get in and out of a parking space with minimal cost and minimum hassle … just like America’s scooterists. Smart’s next move, then, seems like a clever one to me: they’re building a scooter.
Smart’s eScooter concept was first shown as an iPhone-driven electric concept at the 2010 Paris Show, when it seemed like a bit of an electric pipe-dream. Since then, however, Smart has become a real player in the electric vehicle business with a (perpetually late) electric version of its ForTwo city car and pedal-assist bicycles. With those baby-steps in mind, Smart seems well-equipped to build (and market!) the little eScoot.
When the concept debuted, Smart’s eScoot would hit 30 mph and go 60 miles on a full charge. Performance like that would put the little scoot on par with 50 cc scooters from companies like Honda and Genuine, which (Smart believes) will allow new riders to hop on without a specialized license.
Did someone say “rentals”?
Sure they did.
Expect to see something visually similar to the concept shown here within a year … possibly in Key West.
Source: Smart, via Gizmag.