Gogoro electric scooter


#1

I just came across this article, has anyone heard about this company?

http://www.theverge.com/2015/1/5/7484171/gogoro-smartscooter-electric-scooter-removeable-battery

  • Electric scooter
  • Battery swapping stations
  • Nice design
  • Full of fancy geeky electronic features

That checklist looks very attractive to me. It’s definitely something I would be considering to replace my aging smoke-belching scooter.

What do you think of this concept?

Out of curiosity, what would be your ideal price for the scooter and especially for the subscription plan?


I want these scooters off the streets!
#2

I like it.

I spent some days on an electric scooter in Siem Reap recently. Those scooters were rented out for $10 per 24 hours and were getting popular as foreigners aren’t allowed to rent motorcycles in
SR. They were slow and would go for about 50 kilometers if you kept the speed close to 20 kilometers per hour :laughing: . If you topped it out at close to 35 kph, the range went way down. There was one battery that slid out easily and was recharged (slowly) by the recharger that you carried with the bike. The lone battery weighed about 17 kilos. It was kinda weird if you’re used to seeing a gas gage that goes to empty. My electric scooter went from 52 Volts down to about 40 Volts and that meant empty… They were meant for one person or 100 kgs max.

Here are some pics.

tripadvisor.com/Attraction_R … tml#photos

I will go to Bagan in March and try their e-scooters (rented at $8 per day).

This Gogoro system sounds great, but at what price? If you can’t recharge it at home, that’s one disadvantage.

ETA: Years ago (2006) there was the Vectix, which had similar speed and range of Gogoro. the Vectix cost about NT$270,000. That didn’t sell.

If the Gogoro is priced below NT$100,000 with less than NT$1000 per month in charging fees, I think it will sell in Taiwan. I don’t think it will be that cheap. (Are these numbers way off?)


#3

It’s probably going to be the ‘printer principle’ … buy cheap, recharge expensive.


#4

Now this seems to sound smart but it isn’t … what after the third life? Dispose properly or just throw it out somewhere, polluting the area!


#5

I love it. And I think once mass-produced, would not be that expensive since it appears that the batteries are essentially being rented. The powertrain in any vehicle has to be the most expensive part of any vehicle (anyone correct me if I’m wrong). I really like this idea. I hope it succeeds.


#6

I don’t see this happening without the option of home-charging batteries.

Nobody in their right mind is going to buy into a system where the user is held totally captive by a single company that can set its battery charging rates at whatever it feels like.

What happens if the company folds? You’ve got a bike that can’t be used anymore.

What happens when the battery system is hacked (a mod chip in the bike, for example and 3rd-party batteries that can be charged at home)? Then nobody is going to charge in their charging stations and the company loses its main source of income.


#7

If the battery system is hacked, they just price the scooters so they make a profit on the sale of the scooter.

I’m with you in that I think they should allow people to charge them at home. Get this point right, Gogo Guys.

I’m sure as %#@#& not gonna %&*#@ pay 10,000 &%@# US dollars for a %#@$@ charger! :fume:


#8

I hope too that they will sell a home charging device in option, but even if they don’t why wouldn’t this be able to happen? I mean, are you able to refuel your gas scooter at home?


#9

I hope too that they will sell a home charging device in option, but even if they don’t why wouldn’t this be able to happen? I mean, are you able to refuel your gas scooter at home?[/quote]

No, but buying gasoline from the gas station is always going to be cheaper and simpler than trying to produce your own gasoline at home. :s


#10

Maybe their battery station system will manage to be cheap enough to compete with the home electricity cost, let’s wait and see!


#11

looks good. hope its viable. lord knows taiwan needs a viable alternative to the scooters of death.


#12

Very nice design and idea. There’s a chance it could work in Taiwan but it needs city government support, something like youbike project would be ideal. Penalise polluting motors in the city centre, incentivise electric bikes and push bikes.


#13

I love the fact that they’ve bet the farm on an outrageously big project. They might fail spectacularly for unexpected reasons, but if they can pull it off, this might actually get Taiwan all-electric. They’ve got to get those charging points out there, and I don’t think that’ll be as easy or cheap as they think. “Renting” the battery rather than selling it should keep the cost of the vehicle sub-$50K. They ought to be aiming for 30-40K, IMO. I doubt there will be a home-charge option for the simple reason that they HAVE to lock customers in to the battery-swap model, otherwise they’d never recover their costs. But there’s nothing wrong with that. I think it’s important people understand that the cost of running an electric vehicle basically boils down to the lifetime cost of the battery pack, not the energy cost (which is trivial).

It’s also a good sign that they decided off-the-shelf parts “weren’t good enough”. That’s a bit of an understatement. I’d say 95% of the batteries, motors and controllers available on the market today (mostly coming out of China) are utter shite.

However, I don’t like the idea of them avoiding (or trying to avoid) the recycling problem. It would be far better to just acknowledge the cost of recycling, and build it into the recharge pricing, since they have a mechanism to do so.

I’d probably buy one of these if they were the right price, and the charging stations were convenient enough.

Yes, it’s a real pity the gubmint is still sitting on its fingers. State or City support - say, a low-cost land lease deal for the recharge stations - would really help this take off.


#14

The farm (if that’s what you call a billionaire’s pocket change) is being bet on there being enough chumps who will purchase vehicles that might not be usable next week, next month, or next year.

I agree that there is huge financial risk in this project, but consumers should not be the ones shouldering half of it.

This business model has the company reaping the rewards of a rental system but passing onto consumers the overheads of purchasing, storing, and maintaining the fleet.

That just seems plain wrong to me. :ponder:


#15

A company SHOULD reap the rewards of its investment, no?

Anyway, it’s an awesome idea but it needs help from government policies. ALL transportation system can live or die on supportive government policies.

As for battery swap, I suspect this is not a good plan, mainly because nobody has seemed to succeed with this model yet. Some kind of plug and park system would be the best, or a hybrid of the two.


#16

Nobody will buy the scooters if they don’t get those recharge stations installed. That’s entirely their risk, not the consumer’s.

Well, of course they do. What else would you expect them to do? Somehow the balance sheet has to show some profit.

How is it wrong? Isn’t that what (say) bus companies or car rental companies do? The customer pays the (possibly somewhat higher) price because their circumstances make it advantageous to do so. In this case, the consumer gets to pay a lot less for the scooter itself, and amortize the cost of the battery over the lifetime of the product. Everyone wins.

Yup.

I imagine they’re trying to do it this way because a battery-swap station takes up a lot less space than a parking area. With Taiwan’s outrageous land prices, they couldn’t afford park-and-charge. Unless, of course, the city governments helped them out …


#17

The city govt has worked with youbike to make it very successful (with powered infrastructure) and there are already many scooter bays in Taipei city , seems like a charging network could be put together in Taiwan fairly handily. Needs city support.

The other idea is to have these battery recharge stations outside 7-11s or car parks or existing gas stations. That would definitely be easier to roll out in theory.

The problem is how to convince people to switch from their polluting cheap ass gas scooters? I think they will have to be pushed. The tech is there,
it’s more a question of political support.


#18

In fact, it’s better for the users. Batteries are the component that has most risk to break down in an electrical vehicle. By renting them, you are sure that whenever a battery breaks down, it will be replaced by another one that works. Renault has different electric vehicles based on the same premise, as well as Nissan, that use the same batteries as Renault. It is for now, the best option available, at least until someone markets the theoretically awesome Lithium-air batteries. Or until Toyota open-sources their hydrogen fuel cell technology, as announced earlier this week. Or until Tesla develops another kickass alternative. The reduced maintenance costs of an electrical bike should make up for the cost of renting the batteries.

[quote=“headhonchoII”]The city govt has worked with youbike to make it very successful (with powered infrastructure) and there are already many scooter bays in Taipei city , seems like a charging network could be put together in Taiwan fairly handily. Needs city support.

The other idea is to have these battery recharge stations outside 7-11s or car parks or existing gas stations. That would definitely be easier to roll out in theory.

The problem is how to convince people to switch from their polluting cheap ass gas scooters? I think they will have to be pushed. The tech is there,
it’s more a question of political support.[/quote]

In fact, What amazes me is how the taiwanese government hasn’t started yet to bet hard on the electric scooters. Giving incentives to replace old gas scooters by electric scooters would drastically reduce pollution AND be good for Taiwan’s electric vehicle industry. If the taiwanese companies started betting on that, they would be ahead of other countries and could get a sh*tload of revenue for the country.

If 7-11 and Family Mart jumped on the boat of the charging stations, it would work as a charm.


#19

I believe the words ‘Taiwan legislators’, ‘bought off’ and ‘Taiwan petrol scooter manufacturers’ can be associated to discover the reason behind lack of change.

Look at solar panels and Taipower…taipowers crony companies led by ex Taipower staff…same deal!

That and the incredible apathy of local population towards improving air quality, reducing noise and improving safety!


#20

yea…seems pretty hopeless when you think about it like that. idiots. has this bike caught taiwanese attention at all?