An electric scooter that can go 100 kmph (62 mph)? Meet the sleek new machine that’s designed to leave the clunky scooters you see buzzing around suburban High Streets, in the dust.
“This is a race vehicle,” says Nicola Scimeca, founder of YCOM, a motorsport technology firm. “It’s completely different.”
The S1-X, which was designed by his company, has inflatable tyres, a 1.5 kilowatt hour battery and a carbon fibre chassis. And according to Mr Scimeca, it offers an unexpectedly steady ride.
“What was really impressive was the confidence it gives to you,” he adds, recalling his own initial test-ride.
And, of course, there was no noise from the exhaust, instead, Mr Scimeca says he could hear the squeal of the electric motor as it sped up and down, and the thrum of the tyres as they gripped the track.
The S1-X is a brand new racing vehicle. It will be used by all competitors at next year’s eSkootr Championship, the world’s first e-scooter championship event.
But there are many other electric vehicle (EV) racing events popping-up across the country that are showcasing and championing important advances in EV technology.
Others include the Extreme E race series, which launched earlier this year. In it, electric sports utility vehicles (SUVs) compete in a series of off-road events. And in 2022, SuperCharge will bring EV racing to city streets around the world.
It turns out to be a physically draining task. Riders of high-speed e-scooters have to quickly adjust their stance on almost every corner.
Mercifully, however, each heat in the eSkootr Championship will only last four or five minutes – partly because the relatively small battery embedded in the base of the scooter doesn’t last long.
A single charge might cover just three or four heats before the juice runs out, says Mr Scimeca.