Melbourne-based Raine goes into ‘hibernation’ due to chip shortage, high commodity prices and delivery fees.

Melbourne-based e-Mobility company, Raine has unfortunately halted work on their electric scooters. After first finding amazing success on Kickstarter, their first product, the Raine One, unfortunately won’t make it...

Melbourne-based e-Mobility company, Raine has unfortunately halted work on their electric scooters. After first finding amazing success on Kickstarter, their first product, the Raine One, unfortunately won’t make it to production, largely as a result of COVID19.

In update #67 to their backers, Raine made the difficult announcement that their costs have increased substantially. The scooter was expected to be priced at A$1,975.00 and while supporters may have accepted a small price increase, the costs have grown so significantly, it no longer makes sense to proceed to production.

We have received a cost increase on the weekend of several hundreds of thousands of dollars from the overseas supply chain doing our build. This is a huge change that blows us out of the water on cost and supply.

A significant amount of the increase is material and parts. From metals used in electric motors and all our mechanical parts, and another large increase added from 3-5x pricing last week from the current scarcity of microchips and electronic components coming from the global semiconductor shortage.

On top of that, freight costs are trending at 2.5x the previous freight price index.

We’ve seen many automakers announce dramatic impacts on their businesses, with factory shutdowns, and long delays for computer electronics like laptops, now common place in Australia and around the globe. While legacy businesses have the capacity to wear a financial hit to product roadmaps, what we’re seeing here is the dramatic impact on a startup business.

Breaking this news to the 482 backers that pledged $438,430 on Kickstarter would be incredibly difficult and the company held a zoom call to detail the decision. For those who have invested in the project, the news isn’t great unfortunately.

Sadly we can’t send backer funds back – they have been used in the project, in our investment in patents, IP, stock and materials, tooling. However if and when we relaunch, we will honour the reward and provide a product then.

Raine says they must hibernate and come back online when the market conditions work. When, or in if that happens is not clear at this stage, but sadly the Raine One won’t be a scooter you’ll see around any time soon.

The scooter was slated to have some impressive specs, with a 48V, 557Wh lithium-ion battery using 18650 cells powering the scooter up to 45kmh / 28mph for a range of 40 km / 25 miles. Those paying attention will know that electric mobility devices in Australia are required to have a max speed of 25km/hr, which showed a strong indication Raine were looking internationally with this product.

When it came to charging, you could grab an extra 20km (12.5 miles) in less than 2 hours, or a full charge in 5 hours. The scooter featured Front and rear, spring and polymer shock damped suspension, supporting riding on almost any surface, with riders weights up to 120kg / 265 lbs.

The scooter was to be much more than that, with smart lighting, smart locks and smartphone connectivity.

Read the Raine Business Update here.

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Creator of techAU, Jason has spent the dozen+ years covering technology in Australia and around the world. Bringing a background in multimedia and passion for technology to the job, Cartwright delivers detailed product reviews, event coverage and industry news on a daily basis. Disclaimer: Tesla Shareholder from 20/01/2021
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