Mopeds gain popularity; It takes $3 to fill up

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Mopeds gain popularity; It takes $3 to fill up

Postby Micronaut » Thu Aug 31, 2006 8:58 pm

Mopeds gain popularity
Gas prices and parking permits trigger boost

Owners of the motorized scooters say they only spend about $4 to fill up their tanks every two weeks. Additionally, parking permits for mopeds are only $15 per semester, they don't require insurance and any driver's license will suffice.

By Erin Castaneda
Thursday, August 31, 2006

Long lines at the gas pump have translated to long lines of mopeds at campus bike racks.
Mopeds have gained popularity in the past year, given soaring gas prices and a $70-to-$135 gap between the cost of parking permits for mopeds and cars.
The Parking Department has sold 85 moped parking permits so far this year. Ninety were sold last year.

Patrick McKenna, Minneapolis Minn. sophmore, rides up and prepares to park his scooter outside of Wescoe Tuesday afternoon. The number of students who drive scooters is on the rise. " I got my scooter last year because it makes my life easier. I can pull up and park five minutes before class and still be one time." said McKenna.

The efficiency of mopeds makes them a more economic investment than standard cars, as they average 100 to 120 miles per gallon. A standard sedan gets a fraction of that. For example, a Honda Civic averages 36 mpg. The advantages, though, go beyond mileage.
A moped permit costs $15 per semester or $25 per year, while a yellow zone car permit is $85 per semester and $160 per year.

Ricardo Hsu, Brazil junior, said his moped got 120 mpg. Two weeks ago, Hsu cashed in on a Lawrence Campus Coupon for a $150 discount at SubSonic Scooters, where prices range from $1,459 to $3,995.
Mike Degraw, owner of SubSonic Scooters, 624 N. 2nd St., sold 150 scooters last year. He said business was so good he had to move from his previous location on Ninth Street.
“College students are looking for inexpensive transportation, and gas mileage is part of that,” he said.
Degraw said that if a moped’s engine was smaller than 50 cubic centimeters, insurance was not required. Another plus, he said, is that any kind of driver’s license suffices.

Even a driver’s license suspended from a DUI would work. Daniel Kirk, Wichita senior, had two older brothers who were issued DUI charges. The brothers purchased and passed it down to Kirk. The economic mileage kept it in the family.

“It takes $3 to fill up,” Kirk said. “It’s ridiculous.”

Adam Wood, Lawrence sophomore, spends about $4 to fill his Viper moped tank every two weeks. He purchased his moped more than a year ago. He said that back then, he parked his moped next to about four others. Now, mopeds are lined up by the bike racks.
Wood said he didn’t think he should need a parking permit.
“It’s stupid,” Wood said. “You don’t have to buy a permit for a bike.”
Some students buy mopeds just to avoid campus traffic and paying for car parking permits. That’s what Brad Scott, Parsons senior, did.
“It’s the best purchase I’ve ever made,” he said.
Kansan staff writer Erin Castaneda can be contacted at
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re: Mopeds gain popularity; It takes $3 to fill up

Postby Smitty » Fri Sep 01, 2006 12:31 am

Mopeds rule!!! Next to a bicycle, the best gas mileage vehicle I've ever owned ... and the most fun ;^)
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