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Zappy Electric Scooter

Me and my Zappy

This is my 2000 model Zappy electric scooter. It has a top speed of about 13mph, a range of approximately 8 miles, recharges within about 4 hours from a standard household outlet, weighs 37lbs., and folds for easy storage. Zappy's retail for $599 from or can be purchased through a dealer. Ron Tonkin Chevrolt has an electric bikes dealership, and they are the only ones in town that sells new Zappy's. I test rode one there, very nice, but I purchased from another dealer online, for a better price.

Black and Chrome!

Black and Chrome is my favorite color combination, and that's what I got when I ordered my Zappy. This is the most refined color combination, and the scooter looks less like a toy when dressed in black. Other colors available are blue, red, and yellow.

Full tilt!

With round motorcycle-style tires, the Zappy is easily leaned into corners. The handle bars do turn fully, but when riding, most steering is done by leaning your body one way or the other. The electric motor is very peppy when freshly charged, and the sudden full power which electric vehicles have surprises many first time riders. It is recommended that you lean forward slightly when you first hit the throttle. As a safety measure, the Zappy must be traveling more than 3mph for the engine to engage. This keeps the motor from running and the tire spinning if for instance it is folded in the trunk of your car and a loose item where to press against the throttle. Also preserves the battery and prevents wheelies from a stand still. A simple kick and go and you're off!

Folds and fits in the trunk

I bought my Zappy for three reasons. First, I like electric vehicles, I believe in them, and it was time for me to bite the bullet and get one. A Zappy is a good introduction into the world of EV's (Electric Vehicles). Secondly, I bought the Zappy because it would be fun and so cool. Third, and perhaps the most important reason I bought a Zappy, this is a commuter vehicle for me.

A Zappy has the perfect combination of size, cost, performance, and style to make it an ideal secondary commuter vehicle. As the picture above shows, my Zappy folds and fits nicely in the trunk of my Subaru. I then drive to my parking area outside of downtown each day, take out the Zappy, and in about 4 or 5 minutes I'm at the office. Previously I had been walking this same distance in about 15 minutes. Commuting from my car to the office is shorter, easier, and a lot more fun. I have this arrangement to avoid paying in excess of $125 a month to park downtown, so if you get far enough away in residental areas, you can park on the street for free, but still be close enough to walk, or in my case Zappy to work. Several people from my office and others do this. The Zappy charger weighs only a few pounds, and is small enough to easily fit in my backpack with whatever else I'm taking into work, such as my lunch or a change of shoes. The Zappy is fully charged quickly as I plug it in right by my desk. Other people in my office are seriously considering the purchase of a Zappy for the car to office commute.

As a bit of a postlude, I ruined my first battery in under 5 months due to the inadequate charger that came with my Zappy. I called the factory because my Zappy just stopped running. The first guy I talked with shipped me a new motor for free because he thought that was the problem. After installing the new motor myself (it came with no instructions by the way) the Zappy still didn't work. I called them again and after explaining my use of the Zappy, they informed me that the battery had been consistently overcharged and I have blown out the cells in the battery because of it. That conflicted with everything I'd read or heard before about the battery care, and the owner's manual is very shady about proper battery care. Every page tells you to plug the scooter in after each use, and it was my understanding that the charger would automatically shut off when the battery was fully charged. The owner's manual only tells you to not leave the Zappy plugged in for more that 24 hours, which I never did. Basically I was forced into buying a new battery. I got it for 50% the list price because I was pretty vocal about my dissatisfacton with the situation. I also purchased a better charger that is much faster and has lights to tell you when the battery is fully charged and approaching full charge. This new set up has me riding again, but I think there might be a slight problem with my brake, maybe due to the multiple disassemblies required for all this work. But anyway, the Zappy is still the best electric scooter on the market. Buy one, but be careful with charging.

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