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April 4, 2008
Jay Leno likes electric scooter made by R.I. firm
"To be honest with you, I didn't want to like it," Leno says of the Vectrix electric scooter.
The folks at Newport-based Vectrix must be giving themselves high-fives after they persuaded comedian and late-night talk show host Jay Leno to take a spin on one of their all-electric scooters.
Vectrix makes a sleek, geometrically designed two-wheel vehicle that could easily pass for a motorcyle. It weighs 462 pounds, can accelerate to 50 mph in 6.8 seconds, and has a wide seat that can accommodate a rider and passenger. It retails for $11,000.
The company opened its first retail store in the United States last August in Newport.
Jeff Morrill, who heads marketing at Vectrix, contacted Leno because of the comedian's interest in cars, motorcycles and electric vehicles, according to Gary Kimball, a spokesman for Vectrix. "Jeff asked him if he was interested in test driving, and he was."
Leno maintains a garage in southern California in which he collects all types of cars and motorcyles. He features many of them on a Web site, www.jaylenosgarage.com. The site includes videos of Leno test driving his favorites.
Leno and his crew made an 8-minute video in which Leno checks out the bike in his garage with the help of Morrill and another Vectrix executive. Then Leno puts on a helmet and takes a spin himself.
"To be honest with you, I didn't want to like it," Leno says in the video, as he rides the scooter. "But I do, actually. It goes pretty good. It really does have more than enough horsepower."
Vectrix did not pay Leno for the segment, Kimball said.
Posted by Tim Barmann at 2:37 PM | Permalink
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