Scooters & Mopeds Make a Comeback
The initial idea for the scooter design originated in Germany, but its popularity has reached all corners of the globe. Inside the U.S., the first mass-produced scooter was called the Autoped and could reach speeds of 35-miles per hour, although was very unsteady once it reached around 20-miles per hour, according to the Online Bike Museum. Although these early models tended to be seen as transportation for wealthy people, they found a home with women in the early 1900s. In some ways, it became a symbol of freedom and opportunity to many. Women began regularly driving scooters to work and to run errands. Mail carriers used them to deliver the daily mail. The popularity was again boosted when Amelia Earhart, who was a celebrated American aviator, was photographed with an Autoped in the 1920s.
Fast forward to modern times, and scooters have experienced staggered peaks and valleys in use. In today’s age of environmental consciousness and fuel conservation, both sales and rentals of scooters and mopeds have increased. Both gas-powered and battery-powered models have flooded the market under different brand names, with a selection of options available for purchase. With the invention of foldable style motorized scooters, they’ve become more convenient to store and carry during periods of unuse (like the winter months).
At its very basis, a scooter has a platform for your feet and may or may not include an official seat. There are several advantages to gas-powered scooters over battery-powered models. A gas-powered scooter will always have a greater range than electric vehicles and perform better in hilly areas or rugged terrain. Despite modern advances in electric-powered vehicles, gas still wins in both the categories of speed and power. Electric scooters are exclusively built for one person, while there are many gas-powered models on the market that allow for additional weight capacity and may carry a passenger in addition to the driver.
As a frame of reference, a 250cc scooter can potentially reach 75-miles per hour and get near 60-miles per gallon. Smaller-sized engines may reach a lesser top speed but maintain a higher fuel economy (up to 70-miles per gallon). Some models have even more advanced technology, such as the Maddog Trike that has two rear wheels for added stability and has the potential to reach over 100-miles per gallon! If the vehicle’s motor is under 50cc, it’s technically classified as a moped, which typically has larger diameter wheels than a scooter and has an automatic or manual transmission.
The design of scooters has also come a long way, with some newer models more closely resembling a pit bike or small motorcycle in appearance (see the IceBear models, for example). It’s no surprise that for somewhere in the range $1,000-$2,000 for a new gas-powered scooter, many individuals find it a worthwhile investment, particularly as many urban areas plan for the expansion of scooter use in future years. When looking to purchase a scooter, consider the distance you intend to travel, the desired top speed you’d like to achieve, whether or not you’ll want the ability to take a passenger, and consider if you’d prefer an automatic transmission over a manual transmission. A reputable Powersports dealer will be able to fit you to a scooter for your exact needs.
Online scooter companies have popped up recently that provide scooter rental services, most often accessed via smartphone apps. This poses some problems as the companies supply scooters to riders that may be inexperienced and certainly aren’t familiar with the machine, which has led to a rise in scooter-related accidents in some cities. Still, some entities are calling scooters the future of transportation. With the arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic, the general public was looking for increased safe recreational opportunities and were commuting much shorter distances, setting the stage for a surge in scooter use. It’s predicted that 129-million scooter and motorcycle units will be operating on the roads globally by 2028, as reported by the Appinventiv company.
Insurance for scooters is inexpensive, and in many states (even though motorized scooters are street-legal) scooters do not need to be registered with the Department of Motor Vehicles, adding additional cost savings for regular commuters. Other laws pertaining to scooters vary by state, with some requiring helmet use at all times and many having a minimum age to operate a scooter, if not a valid driver’s license. Some states may have laws about a scooter’s equipment - for example, a list of required safety elements like a headlight and taillight, horn, muffler, rearview mirror, or efficient brakes – but most modern gas-powered scooters will be equipped with all of these features upon purchase. A great reference for scooter laws by state can be found at https://drivinglaws.aaa.com/tag/mopeds-other/.
At Q9 Powersports, we’re currently offering a great deal for a helmet with any scooter purchase – which can be shipped anywhere within the United States. Feel secure in your purchase with a one-year warranty on engine parts, three months warranty on the electrical components, and friendly technical support for as long as you own the machine. We are located in Madison, Wisconsin, but offer hassle-free shipping on any of our products right to your door. Our company operates on the idea of providing quality Powersports products at the most affordable prices so that everyone can enjoy riding. We’ve grown from a small privately-owned business started in 2004 to a leading national supplier of a variety of quality Powersports. If you have any questions, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at our toll-free number to talk to a real person: 1-888-252-9250.