Electric scooter 'zuums' into play

Self-described tinkerer and car enthusiast Tom Boyd was a successful salesman with no engineering training 3½ years ago when he came up with an interesting idea for a vehicle steered by its rear wheels.
Yesterday, the San Diego inventor zipped around a North Harbor Drive parking lot atop the first incarnation of his concept: the Zuumer electric scooter.

With one wheel in front and two in back, the Zuumer could be called a poor man's Segway or an oversized skateboard with handlebars.

“I like to call it the smart man's Segway,” Boyd said. “It's faster, maneuvers better and costs half as much.”

While the Segway never lived up to its hype, Boyd and colleagues from ZuumCraft Inc. hope to build a San Diego business by capturing a sense of “cool” with a scooter that can literally do circles around Segway.

They just completed a two-week trek on the scooter, from the Golden Gate Bridge in San Francisco to the San Diego-Coronado Bridge. In what was part publicity stunt and part demonstration of the vehicle's durability, Boyd rode along the coastal highway, pausing every 20 miles or so – more frequently when he had to climb hills – to swap fresh batteries.

The $2,195 Zuumer, scheduled to go into production in January, is capable of hitting nearly 20 mph and will go about 20 miles before recharging.

The scooter is considered a motorized bicycle in California, and generally can travel in bicycle lanes and on local roads where bicycles are allowed, according to ZuumCraft. It's also subject to local regulations and restrictions.

The Zuumer gets its power from an electric motor in its front wheel, but the steering is done from the back as the rider shifts his weight from side to side.

The back of the scooter turns separately from the front, like an articulated bus turning a tight corner. At the same time, the wheels lean into the turn, like a motorcycle, and they steer like a long firetruck with a driver for the back end.

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1 comment:

micro scooter said...

Technology plays vital role in every person's life. Its fantastic post about electric scooter. I have this type of scooter. So I like this post so much.


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