The Scoot Coupe: Another Toy for Enigmatic Microcar Market

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Image: ScootCoupe

The 2009 Scoot Coupe is hitting streets this summer. As its name suggests, the Scoot Coupe is a 50- or 150cc scooter designed to resemble a sports coupe. The 3-wheeler goes up to 45 mph and gets up to 80mpg. And you can’t beat the fun factor of zipping around in something that resembles a Playskool toy.

Starting at $6,300 a pop, the Scoot Coupe isn’t ideal as a primary vehicle. But it suits urban touring or beach cruising just fine. Its moped-like gas mileage, combined with its protective design, makes it a safe, fun alternative to a traditional scooter.

Where Does the Scoot Coupe Fit In?
The Scoot Coupe is emblematic of the massive new wave of microcars and EVs hitting the market in the next 1-3 years. Manufacturers are hopping on the EV/microcar bandwagon like lemmings, but nobody knows which kinds of cars will actually gain traction with the public. Currently, range is a huge issue with both kinds of cars–you won’t be able to take a Great American Road Trip in a Scoot Coupe or Nissan LEAF.

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The genres’ successes, at least in early production years, will be limited by technology and infrastructure. Select urban buyers and second-car holders will revel in their EVs and microcars, but anyone who only wants one practical car will have to wait for something with a more appealing price and range.

Still, the sheer number of new players entering the EV/microcar arena means that early adopters an exhilarating range of options to explore. Are modified mopeds the next “it” thing? What about EVs and their many subtypes? Which types of vehicles only have temporary appeal? Which will endure? It’s too early to tell. But it will be fun to see an increasingly hybridized auto landscape in coming years. Heck, the Scoot Coupe might even become a classic someday.