This is an excellent point. Yes, current electric scooters are slower than gasoline-powered, but so many people drive so slowly (my father-in-law for example) that it shouldn’t matter much for them. I bought one for my father-in-law for Father’s Day a few years back, it’s been reliable, never run out of juice in the middle of the road, and was competitively priced. It was also subsidized and has been tax-free - though that might change.
The new lithium batteries are actually quite good and last for up to 3 years with normal use. They are also light enough to carry up to an apartment to recharge. If you recharge them regularly, there is no real chance of running out of juice in town. It starts to beep when you have about 2-3 kilometers left to go.
Obviously, the technology can improve (and it is improving) but I think that will happen as demand increases. Demand is sure to increase if gasoline rates are allowed to go up naturally. Taiwan has several electric scooter factories already and could be really competitive in a few years if the worldwide market expands.
The government is also trying to collect gas scooters older than 12 years (民國90年一下) and will give a subsidy if you replace it with an electric. Considering most electrics are in the 30-40 thousand range - compared with 60-80 thousand for a gas one - it can be a very good option.[/quote]
You are making an argument that it’s good for someone else to buy an electric scooter. Limited to 30-40 km/hr, no passengers and carrying a battery up to your apartment? That pretty much sucks unless you happen to have a 2nd scooter that is gas powered. the fact is that scooters and motorcycles are pretty efficient fuel wise and cheap to maintain. Unfortunately they also pollute although newer ones are better. I don’t even think about filling up my motorcycle with gas. A car on the other hand absolutely sucks when you go to the pump.