Estonian-designed ultralight electric scooter hits European market
Estonian start-up company Stigobike has spent five years building the world's lightest street legal electronic scooter– the Stigo – which was introduced in Paris at the "1,000 Pionniers changing the world" event in September.
The Stigo has a top speed of 25 km/h and folds up and ready to roll in just two seconds. It runs on a 250 W hub motor, and with a 36V LiFePO4 battery on board it is possible to cruise up to 40 km on a single charge. Stigo is very cost effective – to drive 12–13 kilometres per day (which is the average commute of an urban person) costs the user a mere 1.5 euro cents a day.
Picture: Stigos in Tallinn Airport
When folded, the scooter is about the size of a golf bag and tips the scales at 17 kg. Currently the scooter's frame is made from aluminum, but the developers are looking into the possibility of using carbon fiber in the future for an extra-lightweight version, which should decrease its weight by 2 kilos. A companion smartphone app is being created that will include such features as riding history, and social and security information.
The Stigo is priced at €2,370 and comes with 2-year warranty, and its developers plan to ship the first 200 to Europe by Q2–Q3 of 2014. They hope to increase production to 14,000 units by 2016. The biggest market is seen among urban users, yacht and motorhome owners in France and Holland. Also, hospitals and airports are seen as target sectors as these are in need of indoor or closed territory transportation. Stigobike is also looking to introduce its electric scooter in the US (in San Fransisco and Boston) by the end of 2014. Currently it is possible to pre-order the scooters directly from Stigo's website.
The bike is designed by Estonians and the company is owned by 5 Estonians, each of whom has made a their mark in fields ranging from banking to environmental protection to IT. The founders are currently looking for a producer to meet high European standards. They are hoping to find the producer from Estonia but are also in talks with engineering companies in Germany and Holland. The product approval will be made in Germany — this enables Stigo to be introduced in all European countries. The development of the scooter was also supported by Enterprise Estonia.
The Stigo scooter was launched as part of the "1000 Pionniers" event, which brought together exceptional innovators from across the globe. Because of the event, the new scooter has already received world-wide media attention, including papers in the U.S., India, France, Italy, etc.
Picture: Stigo in Paris
Source: (2013) Eesti ettevõte valiti tuhande maailma muutva pioneeri hulka. E24, 26. september.
Reimer, A. (2013) Eestlaste elektrivõrr Stigo otsib Euroopas turgu. Ärileht, 20. september.
Ridden, P. (2013) Stigo electric scooter is claimed to be the fastest folder in town. Gizmag, 23. september.