E-scooters set to boom, says report
Wednesday 20 April 2011
The number of electric motorbikes and scooters on the world's roads is set to soar in the coming years, according to new research released April 18.
The report, authored by Pike Research, suggests that there could be 138 million electric motorbikes and scooters on the road by 2017 - that's over eight times the 17 million zipping around today.
Already used in significant numbers in China and some other parts of Asia, electrically-propelled two wheelers will grow in popularity in other parts of the world thanks to improving popular perception, government incentives and high gas costs, says Pike.
"Electric motorcycles and scooters have strong appeal for many consumers," said the firm's Dave Hurst. "They are relatively low cost to own, do not take a lot of space, and are easy to maintain, therefore making them attractive for city dwellers."
"Governments also like these vehicles because they can utilize existing transportation and electricity infrastructure without the congestion problems and emissions impacts of conventional automobiles."
Because of these factors, the firm predicts that e-scooters will catch on far more than e-motorbikes, outselling them by over six to one on a global basis.
In certain regions this will vary, however, with e-motorcycles outselling e-scooters in North American for example thanks to their higher speeds and ability to cover longer distances.
Recent years have seen several automakers taking more than a passing interest in electric two-wheelers, with both Smart and Mini unveiling e-scooter concepts at recent auto shows.
Earlier this month, Peugeot unveiled the latest incarnation of its e-Vivacity scooter, using lithium-ion batteries which offer a range of 60 km.
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