Drivers opt for scooters to save money

Friday, June 13th 2008, 4:37 pm
By: News 9

By Christian Price, INsite Team

They get 80 to 105 miles to the gallon.

They can go as fast as needed on any city streets. The maintenance is very minimal and they are more economical than a lot of people realize. These are some of the reasons the Atomic Brown Scooter Shop's lobby is practically bare. The shop's owner, Pam Hudson, said her business has been busy lately.

"We're backed up with orders," Hudson said. "Right now I'm pretty much just selling off of a list."

Many people are paying $40 to $50 or higher each time they fill up at the gas station. It's a much different story for a scooter owner.

"It's nice only to have to put about $4 or $5 in the tank too. That makes a big difference," Hudson said. "I was really crushed when gas was just a little bit higher a few weeks ago. It cost me more than a $5 bill, and I just thought I was going to die."

The insurance is also cheaper.

"The insurance on a scooter, for liability insurance, runs about $125 to $150 a year," Hudson said.

Today's scooters can be customized just like any other vehicle. There is even one line of scooters that allow drivers to bring along friends.

"I do carry the Stella which a sidecar can be attached to," Hudson said. "We carry a line of scooters that have an MP3 hook up under the seat," Hudson said. "Each manufacture has different options that are available to dress your bike up, make it fit your personality."

There are also scooters for those who might be intimidated by manual transmissions.

"Most of the scooters that I sell, with one exception, are automatic or what they call a continuous variable transmission," Hudson said. "You just turn the throttle and go, so you don't have to shift. Very similar to riding a bicycle except you don't have to peddle."

Economical scooters range in price from $1,850 to $3,700 for models with 125cc or 150cc engines. Bigger engines are available, but the price's will be higher.