- Spin has unveiled a new scooter design, including extended battery life and features to increase durability. The third-generation scooter will launch in seven cities in August and more to follow, part of the company's expansion.
- The new scooters will have a battery range of 37.5 miles per charge, farther than both Bird and Lime. The vehicles also have a larger frame, bigger tires and rear drive to improve acceleration and uphill performance.
- Spin is now active in 47 cities and college campuses, including 11 markets where it is the exclusive operator. The seven cities that will get the third generation scooters are Los Angeles; Denver; Washington, DC; Kansas City, MO; Memphis, TN; Portland, OR and Minneapolis.
Since it was acquired by Ford Smart Mobility in November 2018, Spin has increased its fleet size by 1,900% and the number of rides has risen 1,100%. The new scooter design is part of what president and co-founder Euwyn Poon called a "maturation" of the company and the industry overall.
What was an upstart just last summer has become a crucial mobility solution in many cities, with riders taking more frequent and longer trips as an alternative to driving or transit. That, Poon said, meant evolving the vehicles, similar to the company's transition from bikes to scooters. The initial vehicles Spin used were off-the-shelf products that weren't optimized for shared use; the new design reflects the way people are using scooters in the real world.
"As we transition and grow, we want this industry to not just be a novelty, but something that works for users," Poon told Smart Cities Dive. "We've always been iterating on our vehicle design. As the industry is maturing and we invest more in R&D … we expect a continuous iteration."
The models were tested in a pilot in Baltimore, which Spin said showed promising results for increasing gross profit margin and decreasing theft and vandalism (the scooters have an upgraded verification system). Future iterations of the vehicles could include other security features and lock-to mechanisms that would allow users to park scooters more securely.
The partnership with Ford and the cash infusion from the automaker was crucial to the expansion, Poon said. "Spin always took pride in not just deploying scooters, but creating a true partnership on mobility solutions that would serve communities, not just ourselves," he said. "We've been very successful in working with more cities, leveraging the Ford brand and their relationships."