December 11, 2019

Gogoro’s electric scooters have dominated the local market in Taiwan for years. And now the company has finally announced the first foreign country to sell Gogoro scooters as it expands westward.

Following just a month behind Tesla’s own plans to begin sales in the Holy Land, Gogoro has announced that it will begin retail sales of its electric scooters in Israel.

This marks the country’s first international retail expansion after debuting a new line of electric scooters designed for the export market.

Gogoro’s VIVA line of electric scooters was recently announced as part of the company’s efforts to prepare for global expansion. The VIVA scooters are slightly smaller than the company’s main Gogoro scooters and are optimized for more crowded, urban riding conditions.

Gogoro CEO Horace Luke spoke with Electrek shortly before the VIVA launch in September, explaining how the company planned to leverage its new electric scooters:

Today’s announcement is part of our plan of working toward going overseas. The VIVA is one of the last puzzle pieces that we are putting in so that when we do go overseas, we have more to offer than a single electric scooter design. We won’t be a one-trick pony.

In Gogoro’s first international retail expansion, the company will be offering two models of electric scooters for sale in Israel. Customers will be able to choose between the smaller VIVA scooters, which reaches speeds of 50 km/h (31 mph) and offers a range of 80 km (50 miles) as well as the larger Gogoro 2-Series model SP2, which offers a faster top speed of 90 km/h (55 mph) and a longer range of 170 km (105 miles) with two batteries.

Both models offer removable batteries that can be charged either on the scooter or remotely, such as in a rider’s apartment while the scooter is parked outside.

In addition to Gogoro’s popular electric scooters, the company is perhaps even better known for its battery swap station network. There are thousands of these stations spread around Taiwan, and they allow riders to use Gogoro’s scooters with a subscription-based service, swapping batteries and paying only for the energy actually used by the scooter.

However, it doesn’t appear that the battery swap network is following Gogoro’s scooters to their first international retail location, or at least not yet.

Gogoro GoStation 3

While Gogoro is announcing its expansion plans in Israel today, readers can be fairly confident that more locations will be sure to follow.

Electrek’s Take

This is great news! Gogoro’s scooters are practically a national treasure in Taiwan, and everyone who I’ve talked to that has ridden one has simply raved about them.

And in a stroke of luck, I’ll happen to benefit personally from the company’s first international expansion, as I’m based out of Tel Aviv most of the year.

Even for me, the choice of Israel as Gogoro’s first global move comes as a bit of a surprise, though not a large one. While many companies are quick to target the large scooter market in Europe, Israel has a very high per-capita rate of scooter usage. Motorcycles are still popular, but it is the scooter that reigns supreme.

And electric scooters are already making a big entrance into the country. Companies like Blitz Motors and E-Moto offer high-speed electric maxi-scooters, and the latter also carries a number of other electric motorcycles as well. I’ve visited the showrooms of both companies and have walked away impressed. And Gogoro’s importer in Israel, which until now has mainly focused on gas-powered scooters, is even opening an entire new “Metro Electric” operation to focus entirely on electric two-wheelers, according to Calcalist.

So it appears the time is ripe for e-scooters, and Gogoro could be headed your way next.

Let us know in the comments below which country you think should be the next stop on Gogoro’s world expansion tour.

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