Hoverboard, Segway & Co : new ways of moving

Segway, monorail, hoverboard, trendy objects that belong to the field of multi-modality and that attract more and more people. But what does the Highway Traffic Act say about them? And do you have to insure them? Follow the guide!


Segway, the forerunner

Let us give back to Caesar what belongs to him. The Segway is a pioneer in what are nowadays called “motorized transport vehicles”. Modern and playful at the same time, it seduces and fascinates.

Released in 2001 in the United States, this expensive machine (count 7 to 10,000 euros for the original depending on its version) is increasingly seen in our cities.

The “gyropod”, as it is called in France, is no longer just Segway’s business. Other brands offer this type of machine for more democratic prices. Still, count 3,000 euros for a quality product, both in terms of batteries and reliability. However, you can find second-hand segways at a much lower price: you will then have to pay 1500 to 2000 euros.

The electric scooter, light and fast

Our editor had tested it, the electric scooter offers a lot of advantages: lightness, electric motor to move faster with less effort… Obviously, there will also be some disadvantages such as lack of flexibility (no inflatable tires or suspensions) and a significant purchase price. Indeed, you will have to pay at least 800 euros for quality models.

Our editor had tested it, the electric scooter has for her a lot of advantages like its lightness, its help to move faster with less effort…. Obviously, there will also be some disadvantages such as the lack of flexibility (no inflatable tires or suspensions) but also a significant purchase price, from 800 euros for quality models.

The electric scooter is quite far from the alternatives presented here: it is the only one that does not use the gyroscopic effect to stabilize itself. You will also have to insure it otherwise.

Hoverboard, as in Back to the Future

You’ve probably already seen the “classic” skateboards with small electric motors. But the hoverboard (named after the movie “Back to the Future”) is something else. Here, we no longer move in a lateral position as with skateboarding but in front of the road. It is a recent invention born a priori in China, although this fact is sometimes contested.

The device that could be assimilated to a Segway without a joystick is much lighter (about ten kilos at most), easier to handle on public transport and to take in hand to store it in the trunk of your car or in the corner of the entrance to the apartment…

Count between 300 and 400 euros for a basic reliable hoverboad model. Be careful, in the United States where the object has been widely distributed for more than a year now, accidents are numerous.

Not so much because of falls or collisions with other users (even if cities like New York prohibit its use for this reason) but rather because some low-end models sold on the Internet present a risk of fire and explosion because they overheat when charged.

Monorroue, the last little one

Recently, this new gyroscopic device has become all the rage.

It is in the form of a fairinged wheel with a tyre, equipped on both sides with retractable steps, all driven by a gyroscopic engine based on the same technology as the Segways. Just climb on it, lean forward to accelerate, backward to slow down… and off you go.

It takes a good hour of learning to start moving without falling. But, a priori, the efforts made are rewarded because these machines give addicts a feeling of freedom close to that provided by skiing… Pierre, who goes to work every day in monorail, will tell you about it mountains and wonders. You should also know that the machine is quite handy even if it still weighs more than 14-15 kg, easily transportable but that here too, quality and reliability are paid for. Count a good thousand euros to enjoy it.