If you live in the UK, you’ve probably heard a lot about electric scooters over the past few months as the government has been trialling their use on public roads to boost eco transport methods.
It’s a smart way to decrease the use of cars and motorbikes on already packed streets, without further crowding the public transport network, which was (and still is) especially important during the pandemic. Not only does it allow greater freedom to the rider, who will have less trouble finding parking and waste less time at the bus stop, but it helps to reduce the impact of climate change on our planet. More about that here.
Given all that, e-scooters are likely to be a big thing in the next few years, so let’s look back at how they came to be.
Homemade toys to mass market
During the 19th century, scooters were homemade, with wooden boards attached to ball bearings or roller-skates, which were about as safe as they sound. Nonetheless, they remained popular and inspired creation of safer push scooters over the next few decades.
In 1915, there was a massive change with the launch of the popular Autoped, which had an engine on the front wheel and could reach 35 miles per hour, which was an incredible speed at a time when cars were in their infancy and few places in the world could boast road rules.
At first, many in the press wrote the motorized scooter off, but popularity among the people won out and they remained an important mode of transport, offering a new level of freedom to women as first-wave feminism started to take hold. It became popular among celebrities of the day, like Amelia Earhart and Lady Florence Norman, but was also used by the US Post Office for deliveries.
There was a slump in sales during the Great Depression but a boost during WWII because electric scooters mitigated the problem of petrol rationing. The popularity of e-scooters continued to rise over the 20th century, with new designers coming onto the scene and using advanced technology to create better models.
The Razor Scooter
Now, one of the most recognisable names in the business, the Razor scooter launched in Japan in 1999 and grew in popularity to become the world’s most wanted toy in 2001, with the Razor electric scooter following in 2003. They were designed to suit the needs of children and adults alike, with kids’ Razor scooters, made specifically for ease of riding and with a lower speed limit.
Razor also has an exhibition scooter team of sporting pros who compete in extreme sports competitions, wowing millions every year, which is a cool way to get kids interested in sports and away from the computer. Tell your kids that one day it could be them doing an awesome trick on their pink electric scooter to thunderous cheers.
That’s just about it for the history of electric scooters and who knows what’s coming next. Maybe you’ll be the next chapter in the book. Infographic image offered to you by Toyz World.