Suzuki Fuel Cell Scooter Gets Approval Nod

Suzuki and Intelligent Energy have announced that their joint Burgman Fuel Cell Scooter has obtained Whole Vehicle Type Approval (WVTA). The WVTA qualification allows the electric scooter to travel on public roads in places around the world where this approval is followed, and reportedly is the first time any fuel cell vehicle to have achieved this level of certification.

The Suzuki Burgman Fuel Cell Scooter was first unveiled at the Tokyo Motor Show in 2009, but wasn’t launched until February of 2010 in London. Since then, the vehicle has undergone several tests, including inspection from the British Technology Strategy Board.

Image via Intelligent Energy

Powered by an air-cooled fuel cell and hydrogen tank located inside the frame, the new electric scooter is based on the design of the original, combustion engine Suzuki Burgman. At this time no price has been set for the electric model, but standard Burgman scooters retail for roughly $9,000.

Suzuki debuted a smaller electric scooter late last year called the e-Let’s, but the new Burgman Fuel Cell Scooter seems to be more powerful, and perhaps practical than its tiny cousin. Michigan based Current Motors released similar models for pre-order in the United States only a few months ago, however, it’s still too soon to compare the different models. But if you’re looking for a truly unique way to travel, and a bit of a gear-head, you may want to try to outfit an older model with solar panels, like Purdue student Tony Coiro did last fall.

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Aaron Colter is a freelance writer and marketing consultant in Portland, Oregon. A graduate of Purdue University, he has worked for the NCAA, Dark Horse Comics, Willamette Week, AOL, The Huffington Post, Top Shelf Productions, DigitalTrends, theMIX agency, SuicideGirls, EarthTechling, d'Errico Studios and others. He is also the co-founder of BananaStandMedia.com, a free record label, recording studio, and distribution service for independent musicians.