Taxis: In the city, they’re the best way to get around sometimes. But wouldn’t they be even better at sneaking through traffic if they used motorcycles instead of massive four-door cars?
Well, motorcycle taxis are pretty common outside North America, but so far the idea hasn’t caught on here – you can blame weather, public disapproval of motorbikes, or an almost-universal ban on lane-splitting, but one of the biggest obstacles is probably a plain old fear of two-wheeled transport.
But, a US company is trying to change that. Moto Limos is setting up a membership-based motorcycle taxi service in the States that’s intended to be the businessman’s weapon against gridlock.
Once you pay to sign up – $125 for private membership, $250 for corporate membership – you can book motorcycle-based chauffers to haul you around San Francisco, San Diego or Las Vegas, according to Bikes in the Fast Lane. You’re also charged by the hour for each ride, up to a maximum of $90 an hour. Some of that fee goes to your insurance for the ride – passengers are covered up to $3 million US.
The service will use 2012 Honda Goldwings, and will offer Bluetooth-integrated helmets so you can speak to your driver (a motorcycling veteran with at least 15 years experience), or ignore him and listen to the radio; you’ll also get a full-body protective suit for the ride, and you can even request the bike haul a trailer to carry your luggage, although we’re not sure how well that will work for lanesplitting.
If you like the idea behind Moto Limos and you want to know more about their services, check out their website. We wouldn’t suggest trying to set up a similar business in Toronto, Montreal, or Calgary, though, unless you plan to use snowmobiles instead of motorcycles during the winter.