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The steel-clad Scrooser hides its horsepower for a ride that’s as clean as it looks

Why it matters to you

This minimalist's zero emissions get around town scooter is sure to be a head turner.

Do you like explaining things? That’s how you’ll spend time with a Scrooser, a clean, minimal-design electric scooter that can be configured for use on sidewalks or on private or public streets. At first glance, the Scrooser looks like a fat-tired, adult-size scooter because the power components are out of sight.

The steel-framed Scrooser has a 36-volt, 500-watt, Lithium-ion battery and an impulse motor. The battery charges in 2.5 to 4 hours and can get up to 80-percent strength with two hours of charging. Depending on how your Scrooser is configured, the maximum speed is 3.7, 12.4, or 15.5 miles per hour. Maximum range per charge is 34 miles, so it’s best for use in neighborhoods, on campus, or within a small radius in a city or town. The battery fits under the floorboard and is simple to remove for recharging or security.

The heart of the Scrooser’s drive train is its impulse motor. When you push off with your leg, your push impulse is boosted by the electric motor when you reach 2.5 mph and it lasts for about 100 feet, unless you push once again. The impulse motor responds to the force of your push, so if you push off lightly it will accelerate lightly. Push harder and acceleration is faster, though we doubt your hat will blow off. The models configured for higher speeds have a throttle that controls the electric motor with or without leg pushes. The motor shuts off automatically if you apply the brakes.

A small LED display in the middle of the Scrooser handlebars shows your speed, driving mode, and battery life. Street-legal versions have a mirror, LED front light, and a red rear brake light. The Scrooser is equipped with three forms of security: a digital key tag, an engine immobilizer, and an anti-theft lock. The scooter by itself, without battery, weighs 123 pounds.

When you order a Scrooser, you indicate if it will be set up for street-legal use or not and which power configuration you want. The less powerful street legal configuration, the one with a 12.4 mph top speed, doesn’t require driver helmet use in Germany. The Scrooser has hydraulic front and mechanical rear disc brakes. There are two Scrooser models, the basic Pure model that sells for $5,116, and a fancier Prime version with upgraded trim and a $5,413 price tag.

The Scrooser looks like a lot of fun but probably isn’t practical if what you really want is a scooter for non-highway commuting. For that purpose, you can buy a U.S. street-legal Vespa Primavera 150 with a 60 mph top speed for about the same price as a Scrooser Pure or a 40-mph max Vespa Primavera 50 for $3,800. Honda Metropolitans start at about $2,500.

While users may not buy a Scrooser to save money, it is zero-emission, quiet, and deceptively versatile under its very cool minimalist exterior.