BMW Showcases C1 E Electric Scooter Prototype

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BMW's oddball C1 disappeared from the company's motorcycle portfolio seven years ago, but as part of a renewed push for eco-friendly vehicles, an electric-powered version of the “city-scooter” may be offered to consumers.

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BMW Motorrad is presently showing off its new C1 E concept, which is, more or less, an electric version of the original C1. Although the styling differs from the original production model, the C1 E still retains the famed safety cage, which provides the rider with rollover protection (some European countries allowed C1 riders to forgo helmets) and a four-point seatbelt.

<;P style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in">While the original C1 used 125cc and 176cc single-cylinder engines, the C1 E borrows the powertrain from the electric Vectrix scooter. BMW won't discuss performance figures, but Vectrix's VX-1 scooter uses a 26.2-hp (21 kW) electric motor, which provides a 0-60 mph time of 6.8 seconds and a top speed of 60 mph.

<;P style="MARGIN-BOTTOM: 0in">BMW hasn't confirmed the bike will return to European dealers, but reports indicate the electric C1 could play a large part in the company's recent efforts to develop green vehicles for urban commuters.

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