Behind its Japanese name, the Taito S1 is indeed a scooter made in Belgium, with its unique two front wheels providing better stability.
Those in the know will be aware that Taito is a video game developer that created Space Invaders in 1978. However, in the world of mobility, Taito is a new electric scooter manufacturer from Belgium.
Two front wheels for better leaning?
Yes, we can talk about “Ta-i-to” or “Te-to” for this new unique vehicle, both are accepted. While the Askoll Scoo3 at the Autonomy trade show in Paris relies on two rear wheels for stability, this electric scooter prefers the opposite. The simply named S1 uses two front wheels and one rear wheel. Why is that?
Taito’s technical director and co-founder, François Desmet, explains that stability is even better. The reason is that the user leans, but not the wheels, providing optimal tire grip even when turning. Moreover, the front system serves as suspension, improving ride comfort, and the wide platform allows for parallel foot placement.
In practice, during a test of a few dozen meters, it is less intuitive than the Askoll or a Striemo. Leaning provides real stability compared to a conventional two-wheel scooter, but the angle is not greater than the Scoo3, requiring a significant reduction in speed when turning. However, the very reassuring braking via discs and an “e-ABS” preventing any skidding is appreciated. The three 10-inch wheel tires are also said to filter vibrations, which we could not test.
High motor power on the Taito S1
Be careful when starting: the rear motor delivers 500 W continuous and 1,000 W peak – the speed is limited to 25 km/h (15.5 mph). We were caught off guard by a wheelie. This is also because the Taito S1 is light for a three-wheeler, 10 kg (22 lbs) lighter than its Italian rival. The Belgian electric scooter claims a weight of 17.5 kg (38.5 lbs), using only the essentials.
Aluminum and steel form the structure, with the deck made of bamboo. It almost resembles the cousin of the Pure Electric Air. Another advantage of this minimalist spirit: better repairability of elements, easy to disassemble. Foldable, the scooter is easy to transport, using its rear bar to roll it.
Simple but elegant, the Taito does not forget integrated lighting on the handlebars, turn signals at the ends of the handlebars like the Ellipse E1 bike, and a rear light strip. No screen, though; the app serves as the information transmitter. It contains numerous settings: time, duration, average speed and position of trips, motor lock, GPS position, theft notification, and remaining battery life. An RFID key can also be used as an unlocking alternative to a smartphone.
The only indicator on the scooter, five lights under the handlebars show the battery charge status. The battery has a capacity of 460 Wh and claims a range of 30 km (18.6 miles) per charge.
A very dear Belgian originality
You will have understood that the Taito S1 never forgets that it originates from the flat country of Belgium. Its design and assembly take place in Belgium. In summary, it is a high-end, powerful, lightweight, connected, and locally made 3-wheeled electric scooter, even though its autonomy is not huge. Therefore, one can expect a high price, but not as much as the requested $2,590 USD. This is far from the $1,750 USD requested during the crowdfunding campaign in 2022.
Available for pre-order with first deliveries scheduled for May 2023, the Taito is expensive, but not more than a mid-range electric bike – in line with high-end ones, one could say. F. Desmet confirmed that the S1 scooter will indeed arrive in France by the second half of the year, so patience is required.