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The Green Life: Scoot and Save

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August 21, 2008

Scoot and Save

With gas prices careening past the $4 mark, a new breed of electric scooters has the makings of a revolution on wheels.

Gl_06c What the Zapino Electric Scooter by ZAP gives up in power, you gain in economy. Maxing out at about 30 miles per hour, it is best suited for darting around city traffic. If you need more range than the standard 35 miles per charge, you can opt for a heftier battery pack that the company claims can run for up to 60 miles. $3,500; zapworld.com

Gl_06bIf you ride off-pavement, go for the single-speed Zero X by Zero Motorcycles. It runs on electricity stored in a lithium ion battery pack and has a programmable, three-setting power controller and hydraulic brakes. The electric motor's silence means deer and antelope don't need to wear earplugs when you bomb up a fire road. $8,350; zeromotorcycles.com

Gl_06d The aluminum-framed Maxi-Scooter by Vectrix is a Vespa-like two-wheeler for city commutes. It features a reverse gear and regenerative braking, which adds juice to the battery instead of letting the energy (created by friction) go to waste. For a full charge, the Maxi plugs into a standard 110-volt outlet. $9,400; vectrixusa.com

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