Italian police confiscated Kaitong’s knockoff of the Piaggio MP3 at the EICMA show in Milan.
If that’s a thing… that… can be done, it’s surprising it doesn’t happen more at motorcycle trade shows. Surely it wasn’t a good idea to show up on Italian soil during the financial crisis on the week the Prime Minister resigns (incidentally, Berlusconi was slated to speak at EICMA but cancelled), and display a knockoff of one of Italy’s proudest exports. But one would hope authorities would afford the same attention to other imitators, too.
In other MP3-ish news, Vectrix is promising their 3-wheeler for 2012.
The Fédération Internationale de Motocyclisme reports the launch of the United Nations Environment Programme ZERO-race. The ZERO-race pits various electric vehicles in an 80-day race across Europe, Asian and North America. Included in the four-vehicle line-up is a Vectrix scooter. While the company may struggle with glimmers of hope, a German team hopes to take one around the world to promote zero-emissions alternatives. Only one of the vehicles has four wheels so it seems that traditional cages are the odd man out in this ‘sprint’. Maybe an electric MP3 could enter next time around. Any Vectrix riders out there supplying their steed with solar go juice?
Vectrix has been rescued from bankruptcy by Hong-Kong-based GP Batteries. “New Vectrix” is already shipping bikes and parts and plans to exhibit at Dealer Expo this weekend in Indianapolis.
Vectrix Corporation has notified dealers that they’ve been unsuccessful finding new investors and are preparing to file for bankruptcy:
Continue reading “Vectrix prepares for bankruptcy”
We’ve been asked several times this week why we haven’t fallen all over ourselves to join the media bandwagon hyping Piaggio’s revolutionary MP3 plug-in hybrid, due to the U.S. in 2010. Here’s why:
Continue reading “Plug in, 2006-style!”
Charles from Scooter-Station pointed us to this Vectrix announcement via the London Stock Exchange, where their stock is traded:
Middletown, R.I.- April 14 – Vectrix Corporation (AIM: VRX) (www.vectrix.com), maker of the world’s first high performance, two-wheel zero emission vehicle (ZEV), announces that while its efforts continue to secure new equity funding and government based loan or grant support as well as temporary financing, the Directors will now begin to seek other strategic alternatives which could include a merger or sale of the business. The Company will continue to provide updates to the market as we progress through these activities. In order to conserve working capital for continuing operations during this period, the Company this week implemented cost savings measures including a significant reduction in workforce involving some 60 staff.
Trading in the common stock of the Company remains suspended until further notice.
My photos from Dealer Expo 2009 are up, over in the Gallery. Silent Ron posted his, too, but his photo site is down at the moment. I’m still writing furiously, but i’m done for tonight, have a gander at the photos and post any questions in the comments so I can make sure I cover them in this never-ending story.
Electric scooter manufacturer Vectrix Vectrix announced yesterday that they’ll offer financing through Sparta Financial. The Vectrix VX-1 seems to be the only currently-available electric bike that can compete with over-50cc gas scooters’ speed and range (A Vectrix is holding the lead in the Cold Weather Challenge, for instance), but its price tag is daunting, apparently they’re banking on financing (and a less expensive, lower-performance VX-1E model) to make the bike more attractive to consumers.
Lots of activity in the CWC over the past week, I’ll update later today, I promise, but you can scroll through the comments and do the math if you can’t wait.
This week the Vectrix electric maxi-scooter has proven itself in the CWC and the company has announced a smaller version of the ‘zero-emissions’ (near you) scooter. Autobloggreen says the VX-2 is slightly smaller and likened performance to a 50cc scooter. Top speed is claimed at 30 mph with a range of 45-50 miles. The numbers don’t seem like anything new in the electric scooter world. Old EVT Yamaha Vino clone scooters (warning: sound on page) had similar specifications. The literal lingua franca scooter website, Scooter-Station.com, has a photo posted and reports that the scooter will weigh in at over 400 lbs. Again nothing new in the weighty world of electric scooters.
In more inspiring news, Soundspeed Scooters in Seattle is offering a Lithium polymer battery pack for the EVT 168 (linked above) and 4000e scooters. The Li polymer power plant is supposed to reduce the weight of the scooter by 100 lbs. I’d imagine the battery could also make the proposition of their Electric Vespa conversion system a bit more attractive as well.
The two developments leave a shopper for a small electric scooter with two general choices. Neither choice is an inexpensive option with the Lithium version of the EVT 168 coming in at around 4200.00 and the Vectrix VX-2 at around 5200.00. But it will come down to choosing a novel chassis design with a heavy curb weight or a slightly more svelte scooter with dated, less inspiring design approach.
If it’s actually true that GM boss Bob Lutz owns and rides a Vectrix electric scooter, I see a reflection of his excessive disposable income, rather than an expression of his commitment to earth-friendly transportation. (This is a guy who called global warming “a crock of shit” this time last year.)
Italy’s usually-decent F1 driver Giancarlo Fisichella is having a not-so-great season with Force India, which will give him plenty of time to serve as an “Electric Ambassador” for Vectrix scooters.
From motoblog.it: flying vetrix…es (Vetricies?). I didn’t bother machine translating the text, I’m just going to go ahead and assume that scooter is powered by Adobe.
Vectrix has been lending out 100 electric scooters in European cities (more than they’ve sold to date, by some accounts) to celebrate the third anniversary of the Kyoto treaty. Riders can reserve a bike to test for a limited period, and are then offered incentives to purchase (EU “green” credits and discounts make the bike much more accessible in Europe, Vectrix is lobbying for a similar program in the U.S.). The program started in Rome, is currently running in Bologna, and will visit Milan, Turin, Madrid, and Paris in coming months. Vectrix has also started taking pre-orders for its three-wheeled electric scooter based on the Piaggio MP3 system.
A bunch of stories to block out election coverage: