British startup Hilo, co-founded by Andy Palmer, has launched a new e-scooter called the Hilo One that comes packed with high-tech safety features. Palmer is often referred to as the ‘godfather’ of electric vehicles and helped drive electric vehicle adoption in the UK during his time as chief operating officer at Nissan and later as chief executive at Aston Martin.
The Hilo One is equipped with collision warning technology found in cars. Using computer vision artificial intelligence, the e-scooter alerts riders of impending danger through visual, audible and sensory feedback on the handlebars. This feature addresses concerns around safety and public perception that have plagued e-scooters.
Additionally to to its security credentials, the Hilo One has a built-in control unit that integrates with an electric car, sharing navigation information and charging sites bi-directionally. Lotus Engineering, a division of race car manufacturer Lotus, contributed to the Sweeping design of the scooter including its patent-pending folding system which sees dirt wheels encased within the body of the e-scooter allowing it to be carried or moved around using a telescoping handle.
The Hilo One comes equipped with a large 31cm front wheel to help clear out potholes and eliminate nervous handling that plagues some e-scooter models. It also projects lights from its landing gear to increase visibility at night. Charging can be done at home or through a dedicated car charger while Android Auto compatibility allows navigation and range information to be shared between the car and the scooter.
Despite all these features, design hasn’t been compromised either – according to reports from Microbility Europe conference in Amsterdam where it was showcased recently, it’s sleek and futuristic-looking equipment. However, all these gizmos come at a steep price: €2k ($2.4k). The startup is already taking pre-orders with delivery scheduled for 2024.
Honestly, this launch shows how technology can be used to solve problems in the e-scooter sector and improve safety for riders. It is reported that, “the Hilo One is an e-scooter that addresses these concerns head-on.”