Piaggio ready to release 170 mpg hybrid two and three wheel scooters
Piaggio ready to release 170 mpg hybrid two and three wheel scooters: Piaggio is the maker of the Vespa and other scooter brands. They've unveiled some hybrid electric vehicles, 170 miles/gallon, one of which is the three-wheeler (MP3) scooter they unveiled last year. These bikes have an electric-only mode which sounds anemic; low speed and short range. The battery pack is 24v 26ah or else 36v 26ah (depending on model), which fits with low speed short range in electric-only mode.
170 MPG from a real reputable manufacturer (Parts and warranty? Go figure?!) the would really goes is awesome. Bryan who does the old scooter blog (forgive the name) www.2strokebuzz.com, compiled some more information on this scooter here: http://2strokebuzz.com/index.php/?cat=57&paged=2
I think the idea of the Piaggio/Vespa hybrid is along the same lines as the Honda Insight, where the electric power assists in parallel the gas engine at acceleration to improve over all efficiency and reduce emissions. The Prius (by analogy) more readily switches between gas and all-electric modes. So the anemic electric-only feature is more of a nice extra. It is cool that you could consciously/manually select this mode. Something were still waiting for with the Prius and I don't think was ever offered on the Insight.
We can expect a pretty substantial lag between these scooters showing up in Europe and having them fully DOT and EPA approved for sale here. However, maybe Piaggio would want to target these vehicles here since hybrids seem to sell surprising well, as a niche vehicle, here in the US. Maybe that's just my skewed view of hybrids since I live in Portland, OR where the Prius is everywhere. ;-)