It is a problem which has confronted motorhome users for years; how do you get about once you arrive at your destination? Whilst the journey itself does of course yield great pleasure, it can prove difficult to explore down winding roads in a motorhome.
Some enthusiasts have settled for bicycles, some attach mopeds or motorbikes to the back, and some will tow a car behind their motorhome.
Most of us are familiar with folding bicycles, as championed by the market leaders Brompton. A great solution for commuters travelling in rush hour who are forbidden from taking full sized bikes on the train. Sturdy, comfortable and relatively lightweight, they have surged in popularity
If it could work for a bicycle, why not for a moped?
A major advantage of the folding moped is the storage. Whilst the dimensions for different models will of course vary, they are small enough to be easily tucked away without taking up too much space and you even have room for two. This will make it far less of a target for thieves than having bicycles or a moped exposed on the back of your motorhome
Di Blasi have been building these mopeds since 1974, so it is safe to assume that they know what they’re doing! It comes in a choice of 3 colours – red, blue and dark grey – or as a stainless steel version. When folded, it is a similar size to a suitcase (79.5 x 35.5 x 61.5cm) and can be unfolded in 5 seconds without using any tools and without screwing or unscrewing any devices. It comes in at just under 30kg, which for a fully-fledged moped is incredibly lightweight.
Whilst some of the other folding mopeds on the market are uncomfortable and unstable, the R7E provides you with a wheelbase of 93.5cm, resulting in a comfortable and safe riding position. Unlike many of its competitors, the R7E runs on petrol not a battery, giving you freedom to roam farther afield without the fear of a flat battery playing on your mind. It has a 50cc single cylinder, two stroke engine with a 3 litre fuel tank and can reach speeds of up to 30mph. There also some useful accessories available, including a carrying bag, a rear luggage rack and a shopping bag to really get the most out of your moped.
Next is the Di Blasi mod R70, an electric variation on the R7E series. It comes with an even longer wheelbase of 97.5cm and smaller folder dimensions (69 x 36 x 63cm) than the R7E, but it does weigh more at 36.2kg. The reason for the added weight is due to the battery; however this can be removed easily and quickly, reducing the weight to 24.7kg.
The battery is a LiFePO4 – the best available on the market today, and also the most expensive element of the moped. Many electric mopeds use a lead based battery, but despite weighing the same a LiFePO4 can hold 3 times the charge and deliver 4 times more energy. A typical lead battery will lose 20% of its charging capacity after around 250 charges, whereas the LieFePO4 is still at 95% capacity after 1000. The R70 does not emit any odours and has no elements prone to overheating which could damage the area where you store the moped. It has a range of just under 40 miles and a top speed of 25mph, and you also have the option of attaching a luggage rack to the back.
Whilst De Blasi are not the only foldable moped manufacturers on the market, their product is the one best suited to a motorhome or campervan user due to its size and weight. They are not cheap, with the petrol models starting at around £2300 and the electric ones at around £2600, but they could end up saving you money in the long run. Not to mention the sense of freedom they can add to your next motorhome adventure!
For more information, visit the Di Blasi website.