Lit Motors kubo — A Load-Carrying Electric Scooter

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Lit Motors kubo

A San Francisco start-up company has just announced plans this week to launch an electric scooter called the Lit Motors kubo that can carry 300lbs of cargo and a rider.

A group of friends – Danny Kim, Elliot Ortiz and Zach Levenberg – founded Lit Motors and in 2010 began working on a concept to design an electric scooter that could carry bulky loads.

You may be familiar with Lit Motors from their design for an enclosed two-wheeler incapable of falling over, the Lit Motors C-1 has yet to go on-sale, but has garnered much mainstream press for its advanced safety features.

Lit Motors kubo
The Lit Motors team and the initial kubo prototype.

Lit Motors said that carrying anything on a conventional scooter is a hassle and they couldn’t find a good quality electric scooter for what they had in mind. So they tore down an old Vespa for parts and created the first kubo out of pink foam.

This week, Lit Motors announced that it has now built the first working prototype, which has a top speed of 45 mph and a range of up to 50 miles. The electric motor has an onboard charger and it can apparently be fully charged within a few hours from a wall outlet.

Lit Motors kubo
The Lit Motors kubo is designed to be the ultimate urban utility vehicle.

Due to its unusual design, the rider sits over the kubo’s rear wheel behind the cargo deck. Because the focus was on creating a scooter with good carrying capacity, Lit Motors describe the kubo as a pickup truck on two wheels. There’s 22 square inches of cargo space up front on the kubo complete with tie-down hooks, loops and rails and according to Lit its “a fun, easy way to get around the city, regardless of the terrain or how much you’re carrying with you.” It can safely haul cargo weighing up to 300 lbs.

At the moment Lit Motors is looking for funding and has created a start-up company to find the additional finances it needs to put the kubo into production. It already has vendors lined up for parts and is currently looking for a facility to start kubo production.

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  • Phil Mills

    “22 square inches” and a 300lb load capacity? Who’s this for, a guy carrying his depleted-uranium lunchbox to work?

    • John Tiedjens


      • nick2ny

        Yeah, they meant cubic feet. 3′ x 3′ x 2.5′ ….

  • Justin McClintock

    I wanna know how it handles with no cargo in it and my fat butt hangin’ off the rear. All the stunters gonna have a new toy!

  • Eric

    This won’t sell till Vietnam sees it out-do the Honda Cub. It’ll need to carry a family of 5, 87 wooden pallets, dozens of crates holding dozens of live chickens each, a hog, three 4×8 sheets of ¾” marine plywood, all at the same time.

    • Kemal Kautsar

      by vietnam did you mean most of southeast asia?

      oh…and a ladder, don’t forget ladder

      • appliance5000

        I feel an olympic sport coming on.

  • Peter

    Great idea, impressive execution… but what’s with the annoying blurry, skipping video effects?

  • Aaron Averett

    Something that just occurred to me:
    One of the things that makes a scooter more attractive to women is that you can ride it while wearing a skirt, unlike a motorcycle.

    Notably, you couldn’t very easily ride this while wearing a skirt, as that upright portion of it would get in the way.

    I have a feeling that this could be a deal breaker for a significant portion of their target audience.

    • runnermatt

      I believe the target audience is hipsters, not specifically women. That doesn’t mean that they are necessarily the target audience, but I expect that will be the most likely group to purchase it.

      • Miles Cantafio

        Enough space to easily hold your squeezebox, a sixxer of PBR (cuz what hipster ever thought to bring beer for more than himself?), a paperback copy of Breakfast of Champions, and your vintage camera.

    • appliance5000

      Optional attachments for both men and women – hmm. yes I’m ashamed.

  • Garrett Nelson

    I recently road around on a bike with a top box and thought it was amazing to have that much carrying capacity on a two wheeled vehicle, so something like this is a really cool idea to me. I’m a real estate agent so I have to carry around lots of stuff like open house signs and I can see getting them set up to be carried on something like this instead of my SUV. It’s hard to haul that stuff around on a motorcycle, even with a top box set up, so something that is built for versatile mounting luggage hauling appeals to me.

  • runnermatt

    Rather than this I would like to see a new class of vehicles like UTVs that are street legal. It wouldn’t be much different than the “kei” yellow plate cars in Japan. Obviously they would need certain restrictions such as not on interstates.

  • MCC315

    Very cool. I’d buy one if I lived in a city. At the end it looked like that girl was about to eat the curb.

  • sean macdonald

    Whoa, I leave for a few hours and this pops up?! This thing is adorable, I want one.

    • Tim Watson

      That’ll teach you!

      • Aakash

        I love Lit Motor’s conceptual creativty.

  • Garrett Nelson

    Another great thing about this concept is that it shows that with electric propulsion we can have different, unconventional motorcycle configurations. Most E bikes still on the market follow the gas bikes design, but this shows that two wheels can be utilized in a different way.

  • nomad2495

    great vehicle, until you realize it’ll probably go no faster that 45 mph,limiting its usability to urban streets.. Incredible Idea though

  • John Tiedjens

    Great scooter for downtown dwellers. A grocery getter… they could eventually close the whole box in and make it water proof…. with a little styling sorta sporty too.

  • Chris Cope

    That is actually kinda spiffy. You could put a baby in a car seat in that space. What could go wrong?

  • Diesel Logie

    A good out of the box idea => Real engineering

  • stever




  • JT

    I for one welcome our new two wheeled box carrying overlords.