Have I already bought my last ever combustion engined car?

By Jeffrey the Barak. I have been writing about electric cars and electric scooters in the-vu for eighteen years. Most of my articles have been purged via my role as sole editor, because they were so laughably out of date. Gone are the days when I would have to search for anything electric in a…

2017 Honda CR-V, one year impressions

By Jeffrey the Barak. Usually when you read a car review it talks about specifications, quality, practicality and reliability. It helps you decide whether you should buy the same car. This is not one of those reviews. It uses my one year old car as an example to discuss how car design might have strayed…

Ojo Commuter Scooter Review

By Jeffrey the Barak. If Dr. Seuss were to illustrate a motor scooter, it might get skinnier and taller, and the wheels might get smaller, and it would probably look a lot like this OJO. For some strange reason, for a few days in January 2018, on the Best Buy website, the Ojo Commuter Scooter,…

The Nimble Urban Cargo Scooter

By Jeffrey the Barak. I wrote briefly about the Nimble Cargo Scooter after trying one out at the Dwell on Design Show back in June 2014. It was a great concept that placed a heavy cargo in front of the handlebars of a scooter and employed a steering linkage to turn the distant front wheel. But…

Flykly Smart Ped Folding Kick-Assist Scooter

By Jeffrey the Barak. Scooters. I am obsessed with them. I have so far owned at least sixteen human-powered scooters and three electrics. The Flykly scooter is something altogether quite new. It seems to have checked many boxes from the wish lists of the scooter fanatic community, and in doing so will have an appeal…

Personal Transportation Devices for the 21st Century

By Jeffrey the Barak. A personal transportation device can be anything that gets a person around town, without a car. It could be the common, world-changing, bicycle, but we all know about those machines. This article introduces a passion of mine, personal transportation devices that are not bicycles. In many of my scooter reviews and…

The new all-terrain commuter scooter

By Felix Dorling. “Scooters are for kids aren’t they?” I’ve received mixed responses since bringing my new scooter into the office but it doesn’t bother me one bit. My commute to work used to be a minefield of car dodging, maneuvering between buses and avoiding those pesky white vans but since I swapped my bike…

Skujou, Electric Scooter startup in Hamburg

By Jeffrey the Barak. Recently in the-vu we reviewed the Zumaround Zum electric scooter and consequently we recently received a press release for a new German design, still in it’s capital crowdsourcing stage. The prototype Skujou Cruise looks great and the specs are excellent, so we introduce it here, although you cannot buy one just…

Zumaround Zum Electric Scooter Review

By Jeffrey the Barak. Fifteen years ago in this same magazine, in July 2000 to be exact, I wrote an article about electric scooters, as I had just acquired my second and was enjoying it quite a bit. Now, in 2015, things have changed, especially batteries and motor systems, so it is time to revisit…

Freestyle Pro-Scooters without the tricks?

By Jeffrey the Barak. Just lately I have been finding that riding a scooter for a few miles is too tiring to be all the fun it should be, so I have taken to using a bicycle for these intermediate to long distances. Now with a bicycle being a machine, it will give you about…

Half a century of scooting

By Jeffrey the Barak. I may have a few decades of life left, but with my 58th birthday coming this week I thought it would be fun to direct via the keyboard some reflections of riding scooters. This a hardcore scooter fanatic ramble that will only appeal to our splendid scooterholic minority, but here goes…

From a one foot hop to E-Bikes

By Jeffrey the Barak. How much do we want to exercise, and how much help do we want from machines and electricity? With electric bicycles, or  e-bikes, becoming more common, we can begin to wonder whether we are still pedaling bikes or if we are just gradually switching to quieter and slower motorcycles. Not that…

Scoot USC

By Jeffrey the Barak. Los Angeles is a better place to be than many cities when it comes to finding a nice place to scoot. But sooner or later the 26 mile beach bike path becomes so familiar that the urge to explore further kicks in. Google Maps has a bicycle overlay with puts bright…

The Mibo Gepard Kick Scooter Review

By Jeffrey the Barak. I have been waffling on in recent articles about kick-scooters about how much I miss pneumatic tires. Yes, the small solid tired folding scooters are convenient and portable, and in the cases of the Know-Ped and the KickPed are also reasonably comfortable at slower speeds on slightly rougher surfaces, but it…

Kick Scooter Classifications

By Jeffrey the Barak. As you may have gathered from visiting the-vu.com, I am very enthusiastic about the simple and wonderful human-powered vehicle that we call a scooter, and far less enamored with the machines we call bicycles. But despite appearances to residents of the United States, where scooters are so rare you almost never…

KickPed and Know-Ped Family Reunion

By Jeffrey the Barak. A search for the word scooter on the-vu.com will reveal my passion and obsession for this type of vehicle. I much prefer scooters to bicycles, even though I have to admit I won’t be tackling a hundred mile charity ride on one. I have this year reviewed the KickPed, an amazing…

Scoot Like a Pro!

By Jeffrey the Barak. The most popular scooters in the United States are the small folding kind. The fact that they can fold up and be carried makes them so much more versatile than the scooter that remains it’s full deployed size and is basically a bicycle without the seat or the drivetrain. While you…

L.A. Beach Bike Path, Part Three

By Jeffrey the Barak. Part one took us from Torrance to Manhattan Beach on the L.A. Beach Bike Path, and part two began in Manhattan Beach and ended as we arrived at Venice Beach. This article is part three so if you are starting here, you may want to navigate to parts one and two…

L.A. Beach Bike Path, Part Two

By Jeffrey the Barak. Part one took us from Torrance to Manhattan Beach on the L.A. Beach Bike Path. This article is part two so if you are starting here, you may want to navigate to part one first. Google Maps has an overlay view of the L.A. Beach Bike Path at this link: Part Two:…

L.A. Beach Bike Path, Part One

By Jeffrey the Barak. You have seen it on TV and in countless movies. The twenty-six mile bike path along the coast in Santa Monica Bay is a place that many a scooter rider is longing to try out. The bike path is quiet in some places and crowded in others, and some of it…

My road to the KickPed

By Jeffrey the Barak. Most kick scooter riders and potential kick scooter buyers are thousands of miles from being able to stroll into a certain New York City bike shop called NYCeWheels, but thanks to the Internet anyone is able to choose to buy the scooter that I have personally chosen as my current favorite…

Why choose a kick scooter?

By Jeffrey the Barak. Ah, the humble kick scooter. Often maligned as inefficient, or silly looking, but to those of us who know, it is the ideal vehicle for short-distance, low to medium speed transportation. True, if you need to go ten miles, then a bicycle of any type will get you there with less…

The alleys turn to dust

By Jeffrey the Barak. When a city or a state runs out of money, it takes longer for potholes to be fixed in the roadway. It takes even longer for sidewalks to be repaired, despite their upheaval due to short-sighted tree planting decades ago. But far behind on the priorities, are the service alleys. Behind…

KickPed versus Xootr, a scooter review

By Jeffrey the Barak. The KickPed is a custom Know-Ped, manufactured in the same factory in California, Patmont Motor Werks, but made to a lean and mean customized set of specifications, exclusively for one retail store, NYCeWheels in New York City. In some ways it is less of a scooter than the Know-Ped but the…

Scooterer Stories, Part Fifteen – Bridges over the Jordan

By Louis the Scooterer Okay early up, sunrise seen, breakfast eaten.. lets go find some bridges that River Jordan flows under…in this area. Remember we stopped at Arik bridge which is on the main road, where the Jordan flows into the north end of Kinerret (Sea of Galilee).. where many people stop and walk across…

FootBikeUSA

By Jeffrey the Barak Racing scooters are still an extremely rare sight in the United States, and most lifelong cycling enthusiasts who see a Footbike or Kickbike on the road are seeing one for the first time. But in Europe, it is not too unusual to see dozens of scooters competing in a road race….

SUV invasion at MyPop

By Louis the Scooterer Stinking cigars and running out of fuel = not a good start.. but it gets better…. The other morning…After having an early coffee at the square, and being chased away by the smoke from a guy smoking the stinkiest cigar I’ve ever smelled..pheeew.. he was sitting 2 cafes away ! SO……

Station Wagon is a dirty term.

By Jeffrey the Barak Once upon a time, car drivers who occasionally hauled around a lot of stuff and/or large objects from place to place, bought station wagons. In Europe these were called estate cars, and still are, but in the United States, they were called station wagons, presumably because they transferred goods to and…

The Ford Crown Victoria is a lousy taxi

By Jeffrey the Barak Having just returned from the airport by cab, I have been moved to rant about how ridiculous it is for Los Angeles taxi cabs to pick the American dinosaur Ford Crown Vic as a cab. It’s a large sedan, with a big engine, and many cab operators buy them as used…

Taking the “A” Train

By Cherie Magnus What is it about trains? We all love them–the waiting, the leaving, the whistles. Who can hear the distant “woo-woo” of a train without feeling something’s longing, nostalgia, the urge to hop on and leave your old life behind? Literature abounds with romantic train symbols: The Polar Express, Streetcar Named Desire, Train…

Exion Scooters

Exion Scooters – Cees Bakker’s amazing home-built speedsters By Jeffrey the Barak Just one look at the carbon fiber creations above tells you, now those are some fast looking scooters! And fast they are. Designed for the racing circuit which exists in Europe, but not in the USA, these home built human-powered scooters make everything…

A Comparison of Giants

A Comparison of Giants – The Modern SUV versus the American Seventies Car By Jeffrey the Barak In the early 1980’s Americans bought little Toyotas, Hondas, BMW’s etc. in such numbers that many of the manufacturers begin building them right here in America. The buyers of these cars developed a severe distaste for the enormous…

Hell hath no Fury, like a Plymouth scorned

By Mike (Roadie) Marino Published May 2004 Lights, camera’s, action! Quiet on the set! The casting couch and the Golden Age of Film. It was the heady Hollywood heydays. Glitz and glamour were personified by Gable and Garbo, and it was the same era of over consumption and arrogance that inspired the Gloria Swanson/William Holden…

Dog-Powered Scooters

By Mark Schuett How many ways have you seen people being pulled by their dogs? There are dogs out in front of bicycles, skateboards, Rollerblades, scooters, skis, etc. And don’t they look like a great deal of skill is required and potentially dangerous for the dog as well as the “rider”? Have you heard of…

Human Powered Scooters

Human Powered Scooters – The Undiscovered Transportation Solution By Jeffrey the Barak Energy Efficient or Exhausting? Apart from the in-line scooter craze of 1999, the use of scooters in our society has been almost totally non-existent. Many would-be scooter riders have observed that it can be much less tiring to ride a bike for mile…

Godzilla and the ’49 Merc.

By Mike (Roadie) Marino The Fabulous ’50’s weren’t just about Cold War nuclear politics and the fear of a Soviet takeover of America’s heartland. It was also about Brylcreem, ducktails, ponytails, fuzzy dice, hula dashboard ornaments, rock ‘n roll, V-8 muscle and a Saturday night car culture of testosterone on overdrive. We were Ben Hur…

Riding the Range

Riding the Range – Stress, Success and Failure at the School for Street Motorcyclists By Jeffrey the Barak It may be a cliché to call this a mid-life identity crisis, but at the ripe old age of 45 I suddenly find myself with an overwhelming desire to put an amusement park between my legs. What…

Italians invade U.S. – Scooters are back!

By Jeffrey the Barak In September 2000, in the United Kingdom, there was a nationwide fuel shortage. The roads fell silent as cars and trucks sat around with their engines in hibernation. However, the British public were already used to gasoline which cost as much as wine, so thousands of them were able to continue…

Scoot Electric

The electric scooter could one day become as common a sight as the bicycle, if only there were better batteries. By Jeffrey the Barak in Los Angeles. Originally published in the-vu in July 2000 Revised December 2000 and again in August 2003 2000 Phat Flyer by Currie Technologies Bad gas We live in a world…

The Wonders of Southern California’s Historic Ridge Route.

It’s still there! The Wonders of Southern California’s Historic Ridge Route. By Jeffrey the Barak Horseshoe bend It began with an intriguing map tumbling out of the Los Angeles Times in October 1997. Like a map to hidden pirate treasure, it showed the way to an adventure that would become one of my most memorable…