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As a matter of fact, it does

May 23, 2012
Suitcase scooter

Valmobile scooter folds into a suitcase. Really, it does. (Found on Facebook)

Have you ever seen the opening titles of the 1960s animated TV series The Jetsons? You know, the part where George Jetson arrives at work and his flying car folds up into a briefcase?

It wouldn’t surprise me if the Valmobile Suitcase Scooter, above, is what put that idea in Hanna-Barbera’s head.

The Valmobile Suitcase Scooter was not some fanciful art object. Not at all. From the marketing materials:

The motor scooter of a thousand uses. Instant transportation for one or two, completely portable, folds compact (27 x 14 x 24″) …stores like a piece of luggage. Automatic transmission. Easy starting. Smooth riding. Up to 35mph. Up to 165mpg. Air cooled 2-cycle. 2.8hp engine. Under $200.

A blog post apparently written by the pictured scooter’s new owner contains all kinds of info about it: it was designed by a by a French inventor named Victor Bouffort; this example is in excellent original running condition; and IT WAS AVAILABLE WITH A SIDECAR.

The post contains several adverts illustrating the Suitcase Scooter’s versatility, and a section of pics of other vehicles designed by Mr. Bouffort.

It was even revived in 1992, badged as a Hirano by a Japanese company of the same name.

One ad shows the folded scooter in an inflatable boat. However, it appears to be too big to be a carry-on bag. You’d have to check it. Favicon

Thanks to FYSC Reylan for digging up the linked page. F**k Yeah!

  1. May 23, 2012 3:27 pm

    Heh. I live close to the Barber Motorcycle museum, and go there once a year or so. They have two of these, and display them one road-ready and one folded. It really is an ingenious piece of plunder!

  2. Jack Riepe permalink
    May 26, 2012 1:25 pm

    Dear Orin:

    The time may come when this concept is revived, but with a far more modernistic take on the design. And with new lightweight alloys and motor options, this could become practical for those who use public transportation to get close to their destinations, but still not close enough.

    Fondest regards,
    Twisted Roads

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