[UPDATE, January 19, 2023: Back in 2019, the Liger Mobility self-balancing scooter concept was just that: a concept. Developed by IIT Bombay students, a video showing the scooter in action made the rounds at that time, but no details or production plans were announced.
Fast-forward to January, 2023, and Liger Mobility introduced two self-balancing scooter variants at the 2023 Auto Expo in India. Called the Liger X and the Liger X+, they seem nearly ready to go into production, but preorders are not yet open at this time. Some more details are available, although not all the information is completely clear just yet.
As you’d guess from the model names, the Liger X+ has a few more bells and whistles as compared to the Liger X model. The company claims a 65 kilometer per hour (just over 40 mile per hour) top speed on both scoots. The auto-balancing feature can support two riders weighing up to 150 kilograms (about 330.7 pounds). Both scoots have detachable batteries for easy charging, as well as a helpful Learner Mode and also an Auto-Balanced Reverse Mode. (Reverse modes are typically only found on much larger two-wheelers, such as big touring machines like the Honda Gold Wing.)
Gallery: Liger X Auto-Balancing Scooter
Where the Liger X and Liger X+ seem to differ (at least on paper) is in two places. The display on the Liger X is LCD, while it’s TFT on the Liger X+. Additionally, Liger Mobility lists the “RealLifeCityRange” of the Liger X as 60 kilometers on a single charge (about 40 miles), while it’s 100 kilometers (about 62 miles) on the Liger X+.
The pricing will also presumably be higher for the Liger X+, although only the pricing for the Liger X is currently listed on the company’s website, at 90,000 rupees (about $1,108). That puts it just above the pricing of the Ola S1 Air (which starts at 84,999 rupees), and less than the Ola S1 (which starts at 104,999 rupees).
We can’t draw any direct comparisons yet, even on paper, because full details of the Liger X and X+ have yet to be announced. As, if, and when more information is available, we’ll be sure to keep you updated.]
Original piece follows.
Across wide swathes of Asia, people regularly commute on two-wheelers every single day. Nowhere is this more true than in India, which is the single biggest market for two-wheelers in the world. We’ve talked about the push for electric two-wheeler development there before—but this self-balancing electric scooter concept is something else entirely.
Developed by IIT Bombay students, a new EV startup called Liger Mobility has been working on a self-balancing electric scooter prototype for the past couple of years. As you can see in the video, it most closely resembles a 50cc internal combustion-engined step-through scooter, with reasonably modern styling and a friendly, approachable look.
As you’d expect from the description, this scoot stands up perfectly straight by itself, even when no one is around. Not only that, but a rider can apparently allow a passenger to climb onto the pillion seat without the need to brace the scoot with their legs. This could be especially beneficial for smaller riders who want to take larger passengers—a feat that’s fairly difficult or sometimes impossible to manage on a standard two-wheeler.
The company’s webpage refers to it as “the future of intelligent two-wheelers.” Presumably, this means there will be some sort of interface with your smartphone and possibly your computer, so you can keep tabs on your scoot while you’re at work, school, or home and it’s parked outside.
Liger Mobility has released this video showing the scooter in action, but has so far not announced production, release, pricing, or technical details about the vehicle. It may be a nice-looking concept as shown in the video, but it’s still just that: A concept. The company is soliciting feedback and interest on its website, including what any potential buyers expect the price range to be for this vehicle.
As always, we don’t know what the future holds—but we love to see people innovating like this, and are always hopeful that they’ll succeed. It’s eternally exciting to see engineering students building new ideas and changing the way we think about our existing problems. Even if this scoot doesn’t come to market exactly as pictured, it’s still undoubtedly a learning experience that will inform what these students build in the future.