Tried & Tested

Samsonite Micro Suitcase Scooter

3 Sep 2012 by ScottCarey7
Scooter manufacturing company Micro and suitcase company Samsonite have teamed up to create “luggage that moves with you” – a suitcase that doubles up as a scooter. Intrigued by the reaction the product would receive, I decided to give it a try. The smart-looking polycarbonate suitcase is small enough to be stowed as hand luggage at 13.5 x 10 x 22 inches; it has a hard shell exterior and weighs 5kg (which is not bad considering there’s a scooter folded into its back). It has an interior laptop compartment with sleeves, and this sits between two other compartments. The 26-litre case can carry a maximum of 100kg (plus 7kg in the laptop compartment); the instructions advise you to distribute weight carefully, putting heavier objects in the back compartment. I found that the handle was a little too short for me when I dragged it along, even when fully retracted, and eventually this would have become uncomfortable. The scooter folds out from the back of the suitcase; you have to pull a plastic loop at the top of the case and push the scooter base down towards the floor. The folding mechanism was very stiff; it helps if you push the scooter base in towards the suitcase first, but it’s not a seamless process and does take a moment. It’s also important to secure the handle (now the handle bars for the scooter) by pushing the “quick release” clamp towards it, as the handlebars do fall down a little if not held in place. The scooter worked well. It’s solid and the handles are comfortable with good grip, although it took some time and practise to master the lean-to-turn method of steering, and to remember to push down with my heel on the back pedal when I wanted to break. I found myself veering out of control a little – apparently it can reach speeds of up to 10km ph. The instructions say it’s not suitable for use outside or on gritty surfaces, and the wheels quickly scuffed – this seems a little strange, as every journey would require you to use the suitcase outside at some point, even if you were pulling it along a pavement like a regular suitcase. It was quite freeing not to be dragging my luggage – although when going up stairs the scooter obviously needed to be folded up in order for the suitcase to be carried – it has a cushioned handle on the top for this. The scooter aspect would be handy for moving baggage when airport queues are stopping and starting, or for bypassing busy travelators. I did feel like I turned a few heads as I scooted along, and it’s likely that the majority of business travellers would feel too self conscious to do this. However, I think it would be a brilliant idea for kids (despite the instructions saying it’s not suitable for them). Verdict: While some elements of the design have been carefully considered, and both the suitcase and the scooter are of good quality, I think they would both work better without the other. Considering its price, I think the Micro Scooter Suitcase could be a little more easy to use, and could perhaps benefit by making children a target market. Price: £250 Visit Rose Dykins  
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