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Terra Motors announces its A4000i iPhone-enabled electric scooter

As the functionality of smartphones and the popularity of electric scooters both continue to progress, it’s only natural that we should see the advent of electric scooters that feature smartphone integration. Recent examples have included the smart escooter and the MINI Scooter E, although the former won’t be in stores until next year, while the latter was designed only as a concept. Yesterday, however, Japan’s Terra Motors announced the upcoming availability of its iPhone-using A4000i.

While the 2-passenger scooter does feature a small LCD display on its console, most of the space that would normally be given over to instruments is instead occupied by an iPhone dock. The rider places their iPhone (model 3G or higher) in that receptacle, in landscape mode. By connecting with Terra’s cloud-based service, an app is then able to provide real-time information such as power consumption and remaining battery life, along with completed-trip stats such as duration, distance, average/maximum speed, and power consumption.

Location-based features such as navigation are also in the works.

The scooter itself utilizes a rear in-wheel motor, powered by a removable 48-volt/40-Ah lithium battery pack. That battery charges from 0 to 100 percent in a claimed 4.5 hours, and ought to keep the scooter going for about 65 km (40 miles), depending on use and conditions. Riders should get approximately 50,000 km (31,069 miles)-worth of use out of the battery, before it needs to be replaced. According to the company, most e-scooter batteries last only about one-fifth that amount.

The A4000i’s maximum speed is 65 km/h (40 mph), and it tips the scales at 118 kg (260 lb).

Terra Motors plans on releasing the scooter mainly in Asian countries such as China, beginning this November. Its estimated price in the Japanese market will be ¥450,000, which is about US$4,500. A less expensive A4000 model (that doesn’t feature smartphone integration) will also be available, although its price has yet to be determined.

The company hopes to have sold 100,000 units by the end of 2015.

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