You probably do not have range anxiety using an electric scooter within the city but if you do, there is a new kind of scooter that quell whatever range anxiety you may have – more so if you live in a mostly sunny country. Folks, meet the Solar Scooter from a Chinese tech startup, Wuxi-based Jiangsu Snail Zhixing Technology Co., Ltd. The company describes itself as a “new energy application enterprise” and its first product is a solar-powered scooter, simply called, well, Agao Solar Scooter.
I know. Solar energy and scooter which has extremely limited surface area are not exactly match made in heaven. However, as you probably have already noticed, Agao Solar Scooter kind of stretched the limit of solar cell applications on its scooter. Where the usual scooter has a small diameter stem, this solar-powered scooter has an aerodynamic-defying slab of the solar panel up at the front which is also the steering column.
In addition, it has an unusually broad deck which is also laid with solar cells. Having a vertically mounted solar panel is not the best in terms of solar efficiency and neither are solar cells that you will be blocking most of the time when riding. But that’s not the point. The point is that it gets to charge up for free when not in use when parked under the sun.
Apparently, the solar cells are pretty efficient, capable of yielding anything between 35 and 70 watts of solar energy. This will allow it to fully recharge the 468 Wh battery in 7 to 14 hours. This means if you parked it out in the open, you probably can achieve half or even full charger during the time it is parked. This also means, theoretically, the Solar Scooter never needs to be plugged in, like, ever.
Well, that’s of course if you live in a mostly sunny and not often cloudy area. You probably will not achieve that kind of ideal if you are in a country with an extremely high precipitation rate like Colombia.
There are two models of Agao Solar Scooter, namely, the S80 and S70. The key differentiator is the S80 is a stand-up model while the S70 is a seat-down model. Both models have the exact same specifications, btw, so it is just a matter of whether you like to ride standing or seated.
The Agao Solar Scooter is powered by a 350 watts rear hub motor that tops out at 25 km/h (15.5 mph) and is powerful enough to handle up to 18% gradient incline. It is paired with a 468 Wh battery that provides up to 35 kilometers (22 miles) of range on a single charge.
The ride rolls on 10 inches tires and has a maximum loading of 150 kilograms (330 lbs). Agao Solar Scooter is fully decked out with LED digital display, LED headlights and brake/taillight, turn signals, front dual disc brakes, rear drum brake, hand lever-actuated brake, cruise control, Bluetooth connectivity, and built-in GPS for positioning and anti-theft.
According to a report, the S80 has completed “all the necessary certifications” for it to be on sale in the U.S. As for the pricing, it will be US$1,400 when it becomes available. But just exactly when is unclear.
With respect to certifications, we noted that Agao Solar Scooter claims to possess CE, FCC, as well as UN38.3 which is the UN standard that lithium batteries certifying them as safe to transport. It also has MSDS for the battery. That’s Material Safety Data Sheet, for those who do not know.