New company to make lightweight skateboard EVs
A new electric vehicle is looming on the horizon — an ultralight skateboard run on lithium-ion batteries weighing in at 12 pounds.
Mon, Sep 24, 2012 at 12:30 PM
Photo: Boosted Boards/Kickstarter
Environmentally conscious commuters will soon have another option at their fingertips: an ultra-light electric skateboard. The board will be manufactured by Boosted Boards, which has been designing the technology and testing prototypes for the past year. The board’s small size makes it easier to stow than a bicycle, and it’s electric motor is ideal for folks who don’t want to change outfits or get sweaty on the way to work.
The board is a regular 8-pound longboard modified with twin brushless motors, a lithium-ion battery and custom electronics. Most EVs use DC motors, but they are heavier than Boosted Boards’ chosen twin brushless motors, which are compact yet provide 2.6 horsepower — enough to run the board up to 20 miles per hour and up hills with a 15 percent incline.
In total, the Boosted Board will weigh 12-15 pounds, which is significantly lighter than some other electric skateboards on the market: ZBoard has two models of electric skateboards weighing 37 and 30 pounds, E-Glide makes a variety of electric boards ranging from 29-75 pounds, Exkate makes boards from 28-40 pounds, and Metroboard has some relatively light boards ranging from 18-20 pounds.
The battery lasts a 6 mile range and requires only two hours to achieve a full charge (much shorter than a standard electric car). Regernerative braking — where braking pumps energy back into the battery — is also implemented in Boosted Boards. A handheld remote controls the board with a throttle and brake, along with a battery readout to know when a charge is necessary. And don’t worry, riders can still use foot power if they run out of charge or are just looking for some exercise.
The company worked through 10 prototypes before settling on the current model, which will be manufactured and distributed beginning next year thanks to a fully funded Kickstarter project. Boosted Boards turned to the fundraising website to go from prototypes to production of consumer units, and the fundraiser reached its goal within 24 hours.
Unfortunately for us cost-conscious folks, the board isn’t going to be cheap. Boosted Boards estimates the final product will retail for approximately $1,299, though funders of the Kickstarter can get one of the early boards for $1,199 or more. However, that’s a lot cheaper than other EVs, and yearly cost to charge the board will be minimal.
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