Jay Leno-Approved A2B Electric Mopeds Appear on the Streets of San Francisco

It took a while, but this photo is clear evidence of an A2B electric moped from San Francisco-based Ultra Motor USA apparently being used by a regular San Franciscan. Heretofore, I’ve only seen A2Bs being borrowed by tourists for short-term rentals, or by riders on test drives, or by employees trying to promote the brand, stuff like that.

So this is progress, of a sort.

Let’s see here, yes, that’s an overweight, overpriced A2B Metro being used as designed in San Francisco. Finally.

And here’s something else that’s new – an endorsement from Jay Leno. Check the short video with dressed-for-success(!) (in a camo tank, Daisy Dukes* and high-heeled boots) Ultra Motor “Sales Manager” Shelby Nielsen at advertising-choked JayLenosGarage.com:

Let’s see here. Jay Leno:

Clearly doesn’t understand the concept of voltage. [Conferre this huge 6-volt lantern battery with tiny 9-volt battery next to it - which has more power do you s'pose? Discuss.] 

Thinks the weight of 73 pounds (or is it closer to 90 with the optional $650 battery you can see behind the seat?) ”isn’t bad.” [Actually, it is bad.]

Thinks it’s practical to pedal a moped.

Thinks it’s practical to carry a moped up and down stairs on a daily basis.

Doesn’t care about the price

Believes in helmets for people on motorcycles but not on mopeds, despite the fact that he needed to wear a helmet during his test drive on public streets under CA law.

Here’s the thing – A2B mopeds, like all mopeds, are basically manifestations of  license-and-registration scams. Moped owners don’t have to deal with all the hassles involved of owning a scooter or a motorcycle – that’s the reason for the ridiculous design compromises.

So that’s how it’s going for the first year of these mopeds in the 415.

And to close, let’s review The Law: 

Motorized Bicycle, Electric Motor: Safety and Equipment Requirements

24016.  (a) A motorized bicycle described in subdivision (b) of Section 406 shall meet the following criteria:

(1) Comply with the equipment and manufacturing requirements for bicycles adopted by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (16 C.F.R. 1512.1, et seq.) or the requirements adopted by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (49 C.F.R. 571.1, et seq.) in accordance with the National Traffic and Motor Vehicle Safety Act of 1966 (15 U.S.C. Sec. 1381, et seq.) for motor driven cycles.

(2) Operate in a manner so that the electric motor is disengaged or ceases to function when the brakes are applied, or operate in a manner such that the motor is engaged through a switch or mechanism that, when released, will cause the electric motor to disengage or cease to function.

(b) All of the following apply to a motorized bicycle described in subdivision (b) of Section 406:

(1) No person shall operate a motorized bicycle unless the person is wearing a properly fitted and fastened bicycle helmet that meets the standards described in Section 21212.

(2) A person operating a motorized bicycle is subject to Sections 21200 and 21200.5.

(3) A person operating a motorized bicycle is not subject to the provisions of this code relating to financial responsibility, driver’s licenses, registration, and license plate requirements, and a motorized bicycle is not a motor vehicle.

(4) A motorized bicycle shall only be operated by a person 16 years of age or older.

(5) Every manufacturer of a motorized bicycle shall certify that it complies with the equipment and manufacturing requirements for bicycles adopted by the Consumer Product Safety Commission (16 C.F.R. 1512.1, et seq.).

(c) No person shall tamper with or modify a motorized bicycle described in subdivision (b) of Section 406 so as to increase the speed capability of the bicycle.

Added Sec. 3, Ch. 804, Stats. 1995. Effective January 1, 1996.

Safety Helmet Regulations

27802.  (a) The department may adopt reasonable regulations establishing specifications and standards for safety helmets offered for sale, or sold, for use by drivers and passengers of motorcycles and motorized bicycles as it determines are necessary for the safety of those drivers and passengers. The regulations shall include, but are not limited to, the requirements imposed by Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard No. 218 (49 C.F.R. Sec. 571.218) and may include compliance with that federal standard by incorporation of its requirements by reference. Each helmet sold or offered for sale for use by drivers and passengers of motorcycles and motorized bicycles shall be conspicuously labeled in accordance with the federal standard which shall constitute the manufacturer’s certification that the helmet conforms to the applicable federal motor vehicle safety standards.

(b) No person shall sell, or offer for sale, for use by a driver or passenger of a motorcycle or motorized bicycle any safety helmet which is not of a type meeting requirements established by the department.

Amended Ch. 163, Stats. 1985. Effective January 1, 1986.

*In the “accepted vernacular

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One Response to “Jay Leno-Approved A2B Electric Mopeds Appear on the Streets of San Francisco”

  1. Joe says:

    Wow. You really have nothing better to do than attack what appears to be a good idea and an innovative product. Get a life.