Imagine a city of not only smart electric cars, but also smart electric powered boda bodas (motor bikes) not that it will reduce the high rate of accidents, but because it comes with a slew of features to die for. Meet Gogoro, a newly announced concept smartscooter at CES. And, the makers expect it to hit Asia and probably Africa by 2030.
This concept bike has a host of licitly unique features which include all LED headlights and taillights, always-on Bluetooth connection that of course links into a smartphone companion app, where you can play around with several vehicle settings. Just like in every smart vehicle of late, the key is a circular white fob, that you press to start. And here is another cool part, you can download new sounds for startup, shutdown, turn signals.
“It can hit 50 km/h in 4.2 seconds”
The makers of the bike claim it can so far hit 50 km/h in 4.2 seconds which is pretty fast “death machine”. When power runs low, you visit charging kiosks placed strategically around the cities where it will be launched starting with the US (Gogoro calls them GoStations) to swap your batteries, a process that only takes a few seconds.
The Gogoro Charging Station concept
The company aims to sell the Smartscooter for the same cost as a premium gasoline model by removing the very expensive cells, instead offering use of the GoStations through a subscription plan.You can just swap the battery and get back to the road in less than a minute. It can go for more than 95 km on a single charge but the biggest challenge Gogoro will have is that it will need a dense network of battery swapping stations considering the great number of motor bike users in the regions they are targeting.
The EV motor bike makers claim that Stations with high traffic might be set to charge batteries faster and more often, while lower-use stations might wait until late in the night to charge, relieving pressure on strained power grids.
“By 2030, there’s going to be 41 megacities, the majority in the developing world,”
“By 2030, there’s going to be 41 megacities, the majority in the developing world,” a company representative citing it out as a region that has yielded to extreme air pollution in recent years, as a result of industrialization, lax environmental regulation, and a rising middle class with money to spend. It’s also a region that depends on two-wheeled transportation in a way that the Western world never has. There is no price tag on the Gogoro, we should expect the versions that will hit developing nations to be affordable, but by 2030 I think this will be so obsolete. Here is a thought, since we can now make EVs in Uganda, I think the we can also make our own Electric boda bodas while we at it. What’s your thought?
Image Credit: The Verge