Since all the test pilots have had their scooters for the better part of a year or more, I thought it would be useful to document how the scooters are performing and any impressions we have. Hopefully this will be of use both to prospective buyers and to Current Motors Company staff.
Here's my status:
- Model: Current Motors C130 (roughly equivalent to the production 'High Performance Super Scooter')
- Delivery date: December 1, 2011
- Rider profile: Tall and heavy (6'7" and 280 lbs; 305 lbs in gear and with a backpack).
- Mileage: 2336 miles on the odometer (the BCU reports somewhat less)
- Typical daily mileage: 34 miles
- Longest single trip: 21 miles
- Highest daily mileage: 56 miles
- Return on investment: So far the scooter is paying for itself. I now fill up my truck (26 gallons of diesel @ $4.17/gal) only once a month or less, down from 2-3 times per month.
- Maximum range (estimated): 40+ miles. I did a commute back and forth to work that was over 38 miles on a single charge, and was just dropping to the 'E' on the energy gauge (the BCU reported 20% of battery capacity remaining)
- Typical charge pattern: Charge to 80-100% nightly, partial charge at work. Full balance charge on the weekend.
- Typical route taken: Most of my commute is at 45-55 MPH, with the last three miles on I-94 at 65-69MPH
- Top Speed: 69.5MPH as recorded electronically by the BCU (over 70MPH on the mechanical odometer)
- Problems: I had a a few bad cells when I first took delivery that severely limited the range of my scooter. CMC came to my house, took the scooter back to Ann Arbor, replaced the cells (and did some other upgrades) then returned it to me all under warranty, no problem. I'm very happy with the service, and have had no problems since then.
- Minor issues: There are a few plastic squeaks in the front, but nothing I'm concerned about or wouldn't expect on a pre-production scooter. The front steering column also shifts slightly under hard braking; I think the bearing on whatever's the scooter equivalent of the triple-tree needs to be tightened just a bit. I plan to find a local scooter shop to check that.
- Observations: I've been told that the rear turn signals are very difficult to see in bright sunlight. I'm planning to look into alternate bulbs to resolve this.
- Modifications: I added an OpenLog data logger to capture data from the BCU. No modifications other than that.
- Overall impression: I've been very happy with my scooter; it's done everything I was hoping for and more. When I applied to be a test pilot, I wrote in my application that my minimum requirement was to be able to go 45 MPH on a long uphill part of my commute; I can easily hold 55 MPH on that hill and can accelerate up to over 60 MPH if necessary. I'm so confident in the ability of the scooter that I've changed my daily route to include 3 miles of highway travel, which decreases my commute by 3 miles overall.
- Recommending the scooter: I have no problem recommending this scooter based on range or performance (ok, it's a bit slow off the line). However, with the price increases that have occurred, choosing CMC is no longer the slam-dunk it was when I purchased it. The price for the Super Scooter is now a bit higher than the Brammo Enertia, and a bit less expensive than the Enertia Plus, while the High Performance Super Scooter is in the same price range with the Zero DS. I would think that each of these vehicles fill a different niche, with the Zero being a more aggressive, typical motorcycle riding position, the Brammo Enertia being a bit more upright with the feet further forward, while the CMC design is something else entirely with the step-through scooter. I've not driven either the Zero or the Brammo motorcycles, and I'm very happy with my scooter, but as I said it's no longer as easy to definitively recommend the CMC over the others now; the decision would be rather subjective based on styling and comfort.
What do the rest of you think?