Prototype Seat Electric Scooter Unveiled

Seat, Spanish branch of VW-Audi Group, enters electric scooter market.

Seat unveiled a prototype escooter alongside its electric kick scooter.
Seat unveiled a prototype escooter alongside its electric kick scooter.Seat

Seat is an old Spanish car make that has changed hands multiple times until VW-Audi Group acquired full control of it in 1990. Seat manufactures specific Spanish versions of the most popular VW models with the same platforms and engines, while bodyworks (front grilles first) have specific styling. On November 19, the 2019 edition of the Smart City Expo World Congress was opened in Barcelona, Spain, and Seat took the opportunity to show a prototype escooter that might go into production within the next year.

The Seat escooter is powered by a 7kW electric motor that can reach a peak of 11kW, same as a Euro-homologated 125cc four-stroke single. Peak torque at 18 pound-feet is the strongpoint of the propulsive system, ensuring excellent acceleration and response to stay ahead of the traffic wave from stoplights. Seat did not specify the energy capability of the battery, but did announce a range of 70 miles, which means the battery should be in the 7–9 kWh energy range.

Seat’s escooter concept uses a fairly standardized chassis layout featuring telescoping fork front suspension, single rotor front disc brake, and single-sided swingarm housing the final transmission with a Gates toothed belt.

Configuration of Seat’s escooter is conventional with a single-sided swingarm housing the transmission.
Configuration of Seat’s escooter is conventional with a single-sided swingarm housing the transmission.Seat

Seat also manufactures an electric kick scooter, similar to the one that, within the VW Group, Audi designed and is now promoting. The Seat electric kick scooter offers a range of 40 miles thanks to its 551Wh battery. Use of kick scooters in the city has been controversial for safety reasons, but definitely shows how creatively the individual mobility problem is being addressed in Europe.

Styling is more aggressive than other recent escooter entries such as the Vespa Elettrica.
Styling is more aggressive than other recent escooter entries such as the Vespa Elettrica.Seat

This escooter concept definitely has more aggressive styling when compared to the Vespa Elettrica and may not look as attractive to style-conscience buyers. Because of the power of its motor, the Seat escooter will need to be registered as a small motorcycle and could increase the cost of its insurance, which goes against the concept that the escooter would “democratize” individual mobility, as Seat underlined in its press materials. It is encouraging, however, to see automotive manufacturers taking an interest in the two-wheel space. Perhaps the future of motorcycling is not as bleak as it seems.