There is no shortage of fun electric vehicles on Alibaba, the mystical and sometimes downright eccentric Chinese shopping site. And while I normally find something decidedly more earth-loving for my Awesomely Weird Alibaba Electric Vehicle of the Week column, this week we’re going to get a bit wet.
So grab some sunscreen, pump up your arm floats and join me in the shallow end of the pool as we check out this awesome little electric sea scooter that will have you cracking open your wallet or opening a new bottle of dramamine.
I am certainly not against electric watercraft in the bargain basket on the Internet. We’ve already covered some awesome and inexpensive electric boats here.
I even briefly considered going full Jacques Cousteau with an electric submarine, before deciding that maybe it wasn’t worth the risk.
And while this electric bodyboard doesn’t have quite the same charm as an electric boat with a duck’s head in the front, it’s definitely a lot more portable.
At just 94cm (3ft) long, you can toss this electric toy in your trunk, then haul its 33lb (15kg) piece to shore for an afternoon of fun.
The floating plastic body houses a powerful 3,200W electric motor that powers a single large propeller for thrust. That’s 4.3 horsepower of plastic power at your fingertips. Or maybe somewhere a little more worrying.
The location of the 6500 rpm prop makes me think I’m going to need a pair of board shorts that hold me in place.
The water scooter claims a top speed of 15 km / h, or a breeze of 9 mph. While you’re not going to be opening cocaine smuggling operations in the Florida Keys with these speeds, I’m sure it feels pretty keen in the water.
A removable 36V 12Ah battery offers up to 432Wh of battery capacity, which the company says should give you around 60 to 120 minutes of battery life. Based on my experience with ordering random e-bikes from Alibaba and AliExpress, I consider this a grossly overstated estimate.
But with a removable battery, you can always carry a few more to shore with you. The extra weight can be worth avoiding listening to your kids arguing over who will use the last 10% charge on the thing.
The water scooter comes with what is called a “fall arrest rope”, which I guess is comparable to a surfboard leash. Neptune saves you, however, if the plastic shell is broken and the thing turns into an anchor with you attached.
For just $ 718, that risk could be worth it. The company apparently has some of these things in stock in their U.S. warehouse, and the free shipping only sweetens the deal. After those run out, it looks like their Asian warehouse charges a little more to the tune of $ 999.99, plus $ 168 for shipping to the US.
I’ve probably bought a few too many of my weird Alibaba EVs finds lately, so I think I’ll ditch this one. But I actually tested another similar style electric sea scooter earlier this summer and have to admit they are great to ride. Check out my video of the testing experience below and keep watching long enough for the Baywatch sign if you want to see me doing my best Pamela Anderson in slow motion.
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