Often seen as the poor relation to the motorbike, the scooter has had a bad rap in the UK. In Italy, however, the scooter is a symbol of youth and style, and one company is redesigning this iconic vehicle for the 21st Century and beyond.
There is no denying the fact that we have to reduce our carbon emissions, but the bicycle just doesn't cut the mustard for everyone. To fill this gap in the market, Italian company Me, have designed a fully electric scooter than can be plugged into a regular power supply. The charge lasts for 5.5 hours and energy used braking is sent straight back to the battery (Kinetic Energy Recovery System) It's the perfect vehicle for nipping around town.
"My task was to design an electric scooter. The challenge? Not to design an electric scooter. The result we got is a two-wheeled design object, a perfect urban jungle animal. What I like about ME is the possibility of making it really yours, you can dress it up, make it personal, unique, recognisable to everyone."
Sergio Mori, designer
ME is the first scooter in the world made of SMC Sheet Moulding Compound, with patented chassis. Sheet Moulding Compound is a thermosetting material in sheets composed of glass fibres, mineral fillers, pigments and unsaturated polyester resins, obtained by inserting glass fibres cut on a layer of polyester resin.
But this scooter is not just sustainable and energy-efficient; it's a beautiful piece of contemporary design. The cover can be changed as simply as a mobile phone cover broadening its appeal across the generations. It's sleek and practical without looking sensible. It's definitely on our Christmas list.