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Tim Huntzinger and the X-oto electric scooter; courtesy X-oto.

Clean Transport

X-OTO Takes The Electric Scooter Fight To Vespa

With the stability of three wheels and the lean-in thrill of a conventional moped, X-OTO offers the electric Vespa crowd something truly new.

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If you’re an American scooter fan of the Piaggio/Vespa/Lambretta variety, there has been precious little to be excited about on the home front since the days of the old Sears Allstate or Harley Topper scoots — but that’s about to change, thanks to Tim Huntzinger’s new, all-electric, three-wheeled X-OTO scooter. Just look at it!

X-OTO | A Long Time Coming

X-oto leaning electric three-wheeled scooter; courtesy X-oto.

X-OTO leaning electric three-wheeled scooter. Image courtesy of X-OTO.

I first met X-OTO inventor and designer Tim Huntzinger at last year’s Electrify Expo in Long Beach, California. We’d scheduled some time for him to appear on the podcast, but Tim seemed anxious. The X-OTO wasn’t in production yet. It wasn’t yet perfect.

“How can I help you?” I asked him. “You’ve got me for an hour, and I know everyone here — if you don’t think you’re ready for the podcast, how can I help you?”

Tim said he’d like to meet a distributor, so I connected him with an old friend, Trey, and asked him to take the leaning electric three-wheeler for a ride. Trey took to the bike immediately, echoing my sentiment that — even if it wasn’t up to Tim’s ultra-high standards — here, finally, was a three-wheeler that felt like a proper scooter. “I’ve been waiting for a bike like this for years,” he told me.

So have I. And now, some eighteen months later, the X-OTO is ready.

Packing a patented self-stabilizing mechanism at the two rear wheels for a thrilling 45-degree lean angle, the X-OTO promises “astonishing control, maneuverability, stability, and safety while preserving all the fun of leaning into the curves of the road.”

And that ride will be thrilling, thanks to a 3000-watt brushless motor worked into the X-OTO’s front wheel hub that’s good for an electronically limited top speed of 45 MPH in its fastest drive mode, along with a 2.15-kWh swappable battery pack good for over 40 miles of range. More than enough, in other words, to tackle most morning commutes and easy enough to charge in your apartment or at your desk if you’re pushing that distance one way.

What’s more, it does so with a familiar, scooter-y feel that’s somehow eluded bikes like the Piaggio MP3 or Can-Am Spyder, with their “reverse trike” designs.

“It is a totally different riding experience,” promised Huntzinger in the launch press release. “The mechanism gives stability in a turn even at lower speed. This means you can lean at the full range no matter what your skill level.”

You can watch X-OTO’s launch video, below, then let us know what you think of Tim Huntzinger’s novel electric three-wheeler in the comments section at the bottom of the page.

Source | Images: X-OTO Inc.

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I've been involved in motorsports and tuning since 1997, and have been a part of the Important Media Network since 2008. You can find me here, working on my Volvo fansite, riding a motorcycle around Chicago, or chasing my kids around Oak Park.


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