CLEVELAND — The average price for a gallon of gas in Ohio is more than a dollar higher than what it was this time last year, according to the American Automobile Association.
That pain at the pump has some people inspecting their transportation options, and a northeast Ohio company is rolling a new electric vehicle onto the streets for those who prefer two wheels to four.
For Vince Netzler, there’s nothing like riding a motorcycle.
“It’s so exciting,” he said. “It’s the best feeling in the world.”
It’s a feeling he loves so much, he wants to help others experience it. He traded his Harley Davidson motorcycle for the Land’s electric ride. He works for the company assembling the bikes.
“It’s so light,” he said. “Everything about it. It’s so easy to maneuver.”
The team getting the wheels in motion is driven by Cleveland native Scott Colosimo, who sketched the first prototype.
“A toaster has to look good, but to a point,” he said. “I don’t know what brand of toaster I have, but if I asked you what car you drive, you know the brand of car.”
Land’s CEO said he plays off people’s passion for their vehicles while working to make a name for the land.
But getting this one in gear’s a little different from its fossil-fueled counterparts.
“Because it’s silent,” Colosimo said. “So, if you’re just hitting a button, it gives you both feedback on the screen, then also that kind of audio feedback. And, then, what you can’t see on camera is that it vibrates the bike, so you feel it through your seat and handlebars.”
It’s enough of experienced riders like Netzler to keep moving forward. Two on-board batteries provide power for about a 40-mile range each.
“It’s not just a quiet, docile bike,” he said. “It’s very fun to ride.”
Three distinct riding modes mean the District can seamlessly switch between being a bike, moped or motorcycle.
“The fact that you can commute on the bike path to work or jump on a highway exit, you know? It really covers a wide range,” Netzler said.
Mode 1 gives new riders the chance to travel at a max speed of 20 miles per hour, which doesn’t require registration, an endorsement or insurance. Mode 2 has a top speed of about 37 miles per hour, the equivalent of an e-moped on the road.
Switching to motorcycle mode, Mode 3, ups the maximum speed to 70 miles per hour.
“I have a lot of buddies who are still into Harleys and they think it’s kind of lame,” Netzler said. “And it’s funny to see their reaction. They hop on it and take it for a ride, and they come back with the biggest smile on their face.”
Right now, the Land team said production time to fulfill new orders is about two months due to high demand. Everything is entirely built in Cleveland, and they have plans to expand their manufacturing space this summer.