Gogoro, the much talked about secretive setup which has raised $150 million since it was set up in 2011, has finally let the lid off its first product- the smartscooter called Gogoro. The scooter comes with an innovative battery swap program because of which users will not be required to plug in their vehicles to a source of power for long hours and then wait for it to get charged before they can get going again.
Horace Luke, Gogoro’s CEO, who has earlier worked with HTC, has designed a sleek looking two wheeler which can go from from 0-30 in 4.2 seconds, with a maximum speed of roughly 60 mph. With batteries in both of the scooter’s two slots filled, it has a maximum range approaching 100 miles.
The battery swap program, however, will be a commercial hit only if the proposed Gogoro goes on to become hugely popular and there are a number of battery swap stations around the town. Anyone buying a Gogoro will be required to sign up for a subscription with the company and will then be able to avail the battery swap. Plugging the Gogoro to a source of power is not even an option.
“That’s one way to ensure that you have to create enough infrastructure, we suppose, though we’re not sure how it might affect the electric scooter’s initial rollout—scheduled for some point in 2015, but that’s as specific as Gogoro is getting. If you want to buy a scooter, you’re going to have to make sure that you have a decent number of charging stations around where you plan to drive the thing (the scooter itself should hit anywhere from 30 to 60 miles on a two-battery set). Otherwise, you’re a bit out of luck,” mentions PC Mag.
Assuming that such swapping stations are available in sufficient numbers, the users will be able to change the batteries weighing about 20 pounds by checking up and locating the neartest swap station using their smartphone. Having done that, they can head there, heft the used battery into one of the changing slots and pull out a fully charged battery. The whole process is expected to take less than a minute- as simple as that!
For now, the manufacturer has not disclosed the prices for which this smartscooter will be made available.