How to travel around Edinburgh for less than 1p per mile and park for free
An electric moped from NIU Edinburgh could make your journeys greener, quicker and safer
If you’re looking for a smarter and more environmentally friendly way to travel, a smart electric moped could be the way to go.
Already immensely popular in European cities, they are effective for urban travel in beating congestion and giving people the ability to move more freely around their city.
NIU, the world’s leading provider of smart electric mobility, wants to bring that trend to Edinburgh’s streets and change the way people think about urban transport.
The company, founded in 2014, has sold more than 1.5 million electric vehicles worldwide. There are 17 flagship stores across Europe already, and at the end of 2019, the first Scottish showroom opened its doors in Edinburgh.
Owned by Ross Anderson, the showroom on Dalry Road is a great place to see the full range of smart electric mopeds (also known as electric scooters) that are on offer, ask any questions and even book a test ride.
Ross understands that many people in Edinburgh may never even have considered a moped as a way of getting around, but don’t let that put you off. He said: “This type of transport really is for everyone. It’s not just for people that are into motorcycles or electric vehicles - there are alternative and smarter ways to travel and especially in Edinburgh, which is plagued with congestion.”
The UK’s moped market has been slower to develop compared to other European cities such as Amsterdam, where there are dedicated lanes for mopeds and motorcycles weaved around the city.
However, it has recently seen an increase in sales of 30% as more people are becoming aware of the benefits.
They’re completely legal, road-registered and safe for anyone over 16 to ride in the UK, with only one day of training to be completed before you take to the streets. Anyone who passed their driving test before February 2001 can ride most of their scooters on their car license, without having to do the training.
So, we’ve found out more about the benefits of travelling by electric moped and how they could help to make Edinburgh’s streets a better place.
A greener way to travel
All scooters made by NIU are fully electric.
The scooters are powered by a rechargeable lithium battery, they’re completely emissions-free and a great way to reduce your carbon footprint.
Along with the added benefit of not having to stop and fill the vehicle up with petrol, NIU scooters also use energy-saving technology. For example, the LED lights on each vehicle use up a very low amount of energy, meaning most of the focus can go on battery power and getting you where you want to go.
What’s more, NIU’s scooters follow a simple design, which means they’re virtually maintenance-free, with fewer parts to replace and a smaller environmental impact overall.
They’re also quiet, and therefore don’t contribute to the noisy traffic that often plagues Edinburgh’s streets. And, being smaller than cars and buses, they take up significantly less space on the roads, in car parks, and in cities in general.
NIU Edinburgh’s goal is clear - to be at the forefront of a cheaper, greener transport boom in Scotland.
Electric mopeds are unbelievably cheap to run. One full battery charge costs just 25p and promises up to 75 miles of green travel - that’s less than 1p per mile.
City centre parking charges also do not apply to mopeds, so the days of forking out huge amounts of money to park somewhere will be gone. NIU also deliver scooters to all of mainland Scotland free of charge.
Even better, all scooters manufactured are eligible for the UK-wide initiative to pay for 20 per cent of the vehicle cost through the Office for Zero Emissions Vehicles fund.
NIU carries a range of nine scooters, starting from just £1,996 with flexible finance options available, meaning they cost less than a monthly bus pass.
For many people, electric vehicles can be off-putting. This can be due to a lack of charging points, or not having sufficient room to wheel a full bike into your home each night to charge it.
Fortunately, the batteries in NIU scooters are fully removable and can be charged using a normal socket inside your home. A full charge takes between five and seven hours, so perfect for doing overnight.
This is especially useful for those living in flats, where installing a home charging point just isn’t possible.
NIU has also designed an intelligent app for scooter owners, which means it’s GPS tracked at all times, and is connected to motion sensors which will alert you if your vehicle is stolen or damaged. The app also allows users to upgrade the scooter’s software without the inconvenience of taking it to a local dealer.
With urban mobility in mind, it really doesn’t get more convenient than mopeds. Their sleek and small design means that they can easily navigate narrow streets, and they are perfect for anyone living and working in the city of Edinburgh. With a maximum speed of between 28-45mph depending on the model, they are ideal for inner-city journeys.
Funding for businesses
If you're a business owner, NIU want to help you make the switch to electric.
Due to lockdown, many businesses in Edinburgh have had to adapt and start up delivery services, especially those involved in food and drink.
NIU offers cargo models that are designed to carry food and drink, and is offering funding of up to £120,000 for businesses to apply for a completely interest-free loan. The Low Carbon Transport Business Loan is open to any size of business and can be taken out for up to six years.
More information about NIU for businesses can be found here.