Wheels Through Time is continuing their sale of exhibit bikes, and this one’s my favorite so far! Meet the Eveready Autoped, the first mass-produced motorized scooter in the US.
Built between 1915-1921, the Autoped was marketed towards the well-off to provide a more convenient alternative to walking, though some companies (such as the New York Postal Service) saw commercial applications for it as well. Top speed was a claimed 35 miles per hour, though reports suggest that it was unstable above 20. The motor is a 4-stroke, 155cc unit and a electric version was briefly made available after the design was bought by Eveready, the battery company. For more information, check out this wonderful story on the Smithsonian – they have a 1918 model in their collection, and they note that the Autoped was even used by ‘delinquents who repurposed them as getaway vehicles.’
This example is said to be highly original – the seller notes that “the engine turns but I’ve never run it.” I’ve only seen a sale price for one other Autoped before – at Mecum Las Vegas 2016, an unrestored example sold for $12,500. Find this Eveready Autoped for sale in Maggie Valley, North Carolina with an unmet opening bid of $9,500 here on eBay.