Looking at both global and local trends, it seems clear that electric scooters are here to stay, Thomas Tammus, head of Bolt’s scooter division, said to Äripäev.
Bolt began the ridesharing of scooters in Estonia last summer, having previously tested the markets in Paris and Madrid. Tammus said that based on the first season, scooters were very well received.
“After we started in Tallinn, we saw how popular scooters are and quickly started offering the service elsewhere in the Baltics since the demand was so high.“
According to Tammus, the only exception to this trend seems to be in Paris. The scooters there were extensively damaged and stolen, which is why Bolt decided to withdraw from Paris with their scooters, at least temporarily.
Overall, last season’s main problem was the durability of the scooters. Next season, the company will launch a scooter with bigger tires and a more durable frame, making riding on high curbs and bumpy streets more comfortable, said Tammus.
The hotly debated issue of classification of scooters should also be resolved this coming summer. While the electric scooter is currently a pedestrian accessory, under the new law, it is very likely to become a light-duty vehicle that is subject to separate light-duty vehicle regulations.
In the opinion of Tammus, considering all the costs, it is more profitable to produce scooters in China and then transport them to Europe. “China has a much higher production capacity and more experience compared to Europe. However, we can do product development in Estonia and we can be very competitive in it.”