Pop stars and celebrities are clambering over themselves to get their hands on the latest models in a bid to be seen as doing their part towards the environment.
But it is not just the rich and famous who are enjoying the benefits of these two-wheeled electric motors, with more and more fleets considering the advantages. So much so that one London-based company now leases electric scooters solely to businesses and fleets.
Scootaround was launched in October 2003 to cater for the needs of fleets wanting to lease a scooter.
The group, which also leases petrol-powered scooters and electric cars, is able to supply vehicles nationally as well as in London.
Daniel Showman, chairman of Scootaround, said: ‘We are a start-up company, but are growing beyond our means. We initially started working with local authorities.
‘There is still a lot of work here, but we are also working with public limited companies and are currently in talks with Royal Mail and British Airways, but generally we are working with big companies which have environmental concerns. ‘The leading local authorities are quite keen on the environmental side of things and have been asking for electric scooters.’
As part of the lease package, fleets get delivery, servicing, a helmet, padlock and chain, vehicle replacement within 24 hours and road fund licences, where applicable, all included. Aside from the environmental benefits of leasing a scooter, fleets operating in the London area will be exempt from congestion charging penalties. As the company only deals with fleets, customer service levels are high according to Showman.
He said: ‘The first thing we would do is discuss a customer’s immediate requirements as well as incorporate it into the long-term objectives of a customer.
‘We try to make the fleet manager’s life as easy as possible. In the past, fleets which have converted to bikes either go for the cheapest bike or are sold the wrong type.
‘We offer a range of suppliers, we stop and ask what the bike will be used for and ensure the right bike is supplied.’
Electric scooters are limited in terms of the mileage they can complete before running out of power.
However, a new hybrid scooter is due to be produced and Showman is hoping it will bolster sales even further.
He said: ‘Electric scooters are limited in terms of mileage. We are looking to push electric vehicles but in 12 months time there will be a new dual-powered petrol/electric bike that will eliminate the mileage problem.’
PETROL VS ELECTRIC