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Hyundai unveils electric scooter prototype, plans to cash in on booming industry

The Korean brand wants to cash in on an industry where it expects an AU$738 billion growth by 2030.

Hyundai revealed its latest scooter, a prototype based on a 2017 concept, in Seoul.

Since the first version of the scooter, the brand says its robotics division has made many developments, switching it from front to rear drive for safety reasons and expanding its battery pack, to allow for a 20km range.

Hyundai says it plans to integrate future versions of the scooter to be able to charge when mounted inside one of its vehicles and pitches it as a “first and last mile” mobility solution, perhaps as an optional extra on future Hyundai and Kia vehicles.

The scooter has an ultra-minimalist design, and now features suspension on the front wheel to increase stability and handling, as well as a new display screen for managing range and speed and LED headlights and tail-lights.

The scooter weighs 7.7kg and has a tri-folding design, helping it have a tiny footprint when packed up. The brand says future models, perhaps the production version of this prototype, will also have regenerative braking, extending its 20km range by a further seven per cent.

The scooter has received major upgrades since it was last shown as a concept in 2017. The scooter has received major upgrades since it was last shown as a concept in 2017.

Hyundai’s local representatives were unable to confirm any kind of timing for production versions, simply confirming that this model is a prototype only for the time being. They did however express excitement of potentially adding the scooter as a product in Hyundai’s Australian range in the future.

If it does launch here, Hyundai’s scooter as a standalone product will face tough competition from the well-established urban mobility company Lime – which is in the process of launching its third-generation scooter – and popular US mobility company Bird looking to launch its scooters in Australia imminently.

Hyundai could gain quite an advantage, however, by offering its scooter product as a bundle along with future vehicles.

The Korean brand says market research into the “last mile” mobility industry suggests it is expected to grow by over $AU738 billion in the three largest global markets of the US, China, and Europe by 2030.