Vespa is electrifying its iconic scooter for 2018
The Elettrica will go into production next year, and will feature a 62-mile range and a 4-hour charge time.
The Piaggio Group, the motor vehicle manufacturer which produces the instantly-recognizable Vespa scooter, among other brands, says its forthcoming electric scooter is more than just a scooter, it is "a contemporary work of art with a technological heart." They say that art is in the eye of the beholder, so whether or not the new Elettrica is truly contemporary art isn't really debatable, but other than the changes due to an electric drivetrain, it's very similar to the company's Primavera model, although with a silent and potentially greener presence on the street.
The motive power is supplied by a battery pack and electric motor (a "Power Unit") that is said to put out a continuous 2 kW of power, and a peak of 4 kW, which the company says makes the Elettrica's performance "superior to a traditional 50cc scooter, especially with regard to acceleration." The new electric Vespa claims a range per charge of 100 kilometers (62 miles) in the standard configuration, but for those who want longer rides can opt for the Elettrica X version, which features an onboard generator to essentially double the range.
The Elettrica will be available in not only the chrome and blue color scheme as shown at the top, but also "in seven colour variants," and although there are scant details about the technology, it is being billed as a "connected" vehicle, which is the trend for e-bikes and electric cars alike:
"Vespa Elettrica is not just a silent, environmentally-friendly and technologically advanced vehicle; it is also highly connected: the many features offered by a new version of the Vespa Multimedia Platform, the multimedia system that connects the smartphone to the vehicle, can be managed through a completely new man-machine interface that incorporates digital colour instrumentation with a TFT display." - Piaggio Group
The following launch video focuses on the silent nature of the new Vespa Elettrica, which contrasts with the rather noisy older two-stroke Vespas, and even the modern four-stroke models:
"It provides an agile and enjoyable ride on urban roads, in the utmost silence: Vespa Elettrica is in fact completely silent, helping to make cities less chaotic and more liveable, while also countering pollution from an acoustic point of view." - Piaggio Group
An included cable will allow riders to plug in and charge from any standard electrical outlet or electric charging station, which will take about 4 hours for a full charge. No details as to the MSRP or exact delivery dates have been announced, other than it will be produced at the plant in Pontedera and be distributed "throughout the world" during 2018.