It's been a rough year for Joe Fleming. The local manufacturer had hoped to assemble electric cars in Webster City, but that wasn't to be. However, he's been busy looking to other products and ways to utilize electric drive technology.
DriveTek Iowa's newest product is an all electric scooter, produced for Island Green Machines. The scooter was a hit at the recent Santa Monica, Calif. Alternative Energy and Transportation Conference and Expo, Fleming said.
The two-passenger scooter is Department of Transportation certified and has a top speed of 60 mph and a range of 50 to 60 miles, Fleming said.
"It's fun to ride. They have a tremendous amount of performance. We were really surprised when we got it all together that it ran as fast as it did," Fleming said. The scooters run on a 72-volt lithium battery with a built-in charger. It takes about 6 hours to recharge the battery.
"I rode one to Fort Dodge and back and still had a half a charge left," he said, adding the scooters are well-equipped for either city driving or short trips on the highway.
"We're hoping they will do really well," he said. The plan is to market the scooters in the United States and later take them world-wide, according to Fleming.
He said there will also be a smaller scooter - more of a moped style - with a top speed of less than 30 mph.
Fishermen and boating enthusiasts will soon have an all-electric option. Fleming has a patent pending on the design for an electric-drive pontoon boat.
"We've had a lot of excitement about this boat," he said, pointing to a nine-passenger pontoon boat that his company has equipped with an electric drive system.
"We have a couple of manufacturers who really want our systems on their boats. They think we can sell a lot of them," he said.
Fleming said he started with an outboard motor which was converted to electric.
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