When a medical condition prevented a 40-something electrician from Tauranga from walking a full round of his beloved recreation of golf, he chose to the Segway Personal Transporter (PT) to get back on the fairway. He purchased the newly-released Segway GT (“Golf Transporter”) model in 2005, and life has been better in every way since. Not only has his game improved, but he’s discovered his PT is useful across every area of his life.
The Segway GT carries him around the Tauranga Golf Club – enabling him to keep up with his friends who can still walk, and remain a fully integrated part of the social group (something a golf cart disrupts). In is business life, he also uses the GT to get around the large industrial sites at which he contracts his services. It takes only about 10 seconds to remove the golf bag cradle from the GT model.
When it comes to recharging his Segway PT at his home nestled in bushland at the city boundary, power comes from large solar panels installed next to his house. While the regular electricity utility supply has normal urban reliability, this Segway PT owner likes the idea of being independent from the grid. Two photovoltic arrays on poles (one of which can be seen in the photo above) provide electricity to the household, while a radiator heats the domestic water.
The Segway PT is incredibly energy efficient – it costs only about 25 cents to charge it’s pair of Lithium batteries – that’s a commuting cost of less than 1 cent per kilometer. With a weight of less than 50kg (1/30th of the weight of a typical 1,500kg car), coupled with regenerative braking, the Segway PT is about the greenest and most efficient of the practical methods of personal transportation that suit a wide range of individuals.
And if Kiwi Segway PT owners want to recharge their PTs with the tiniest greenhouse footprint possible without installing solar panels, they can use a time clock at the power socket to ensure recharging occurs only at night time – when 100% of our power comes from renewable sources (primarily hydro-electric power, augmented with a little wind and geothermal).