Hybrid vehicle, Segway takes the lead

The first hybrid vehicle in the ATV world was presented last week by the company Segway. The official presentation was last weekend at the Sportsman Show in Toronto.

I was invited by the company to attend the event. Quite honestly, I was eager to see it in real life as the popular expression goes. I was not disappointed. This hybrid machine, by its design and the ease with which one can switch from gasoline engine to electric or vice versa, will certainly seduce fans of this type of vehicle. Hunters, among others, will be happy to be able to approach their hunting site without disturbing the game with the noise of the engine.

In order to have a complete technical description, I took advantage of my visit to the show to discuss with a Segway expert, Mr. Anthony Diotte-Wilson. “If you choose to run 100% electric, as soon as the batteries reach the 50% level, the gasoline engine will start to act as a generator and regenerate the batteries. So there’s no question of being stranded because there’s a lack of energy from the battery. If the driver wants to drive around using the gasoline engine only, there is the Extended Range Mode system that will allow for gasoline-only driving.”

Asked if, as a hunter, I can quickly execute the switch from one propulsion system to the other, this is what the expert mentioned. “Yes, it can be done. If a hunter is only a few minutes away from his cache, he can get there in electric mode without any problem. However, if he has a long distance to travel, he can drive with the gas engine and when he wants to, he can change to 100% electric. Then, to start, the driver must press the button marked with an E in the dashboard which means ECO MODE and press the button to start the engine and drive on gasoline. At the time of his choice, he can return to SOFT MODE and then the vehicle will run on electric only.”

Photo courtesy Karl Tremblay. Mark Rivers, the head of Segway in Canada, has a lot to be proud of with his new vehicle that will revolutionize the ATV market.

Many advantages

The arrival of this hybrid technology completely changes the game. It must be said that this was made possible due to the technologies developed by the Segway company. Designed in Seattle in the United States, this new vehicle has many advantages for users.

First of all, yes, it will make many hunting enthusiasts happy, but also many people who will enjoy riding in nature without constantly hearing the noise of the engine. It is quite special to hear only the small stones rolling in the tires. It’s quite pleasant to be silent.

Since the motor is designed to recharge the batteries, you will never lack electrical power to move around. This is a definite advantage for you to go far away, where there is no system to recharge the vehicle. You are truly independent.

The model on display at the show was the Villain. The company plans to expand production of this type of propulsion for all models in its lineup so that consumers can choose between a hybrid and a gasoline powered vehicle. For those who are wondering about the autonomy of the electric system, I will tell you that it all depends on the type of driving you adopt, the speed at which you ride and all the conditions that surround a quad ride. According to the first test reports, the autonomy in electric mode at 100%, would be around 70 kilometers.

Mass production of this new model should begin in April or May at the latest. The first deliveries should be made in the fall. As for the retail price, it was impossible to determine it for the moment, but I was told that it would cost around $30,000. I was also able to discover other models and technologies from this company during my visit to the Show. I’ll tell you about them in a future column.