It’s Time for a Cushman Scooter

LINCOLN, Nebraska – Made in America? Bright colors? Simple to repair? Low tech?

This week, we saw a beautifully restored Cushman Scooter, and we wondered. In this time of economic challenge, is there a market for a cheap, good looking scooter? Not some overly done number, but a stylish ….. Cushman? Yes, there is a market.

Cushman’s Brand Personality

Cushman Scooters are a different sort of America than Harley. They are light. They are reasonably priced. They are modest. They are simple looking. They are bright, cheery. While masculine, they are sweet, and clean cut. They would find a market today; read this recent story on the popularity of so-called “Americana” brands in Newsweek. Like Hinckley boats, they connote a certain sort of American feeling. They would fit in a Ralph Lauren ad.

The company was founded in 1901 when Everett and Clinton Cushman made two-cycle boat engines in Lincoln, Nebraska. In 1913 the company became Cushman Motor Works; the rest was American history.

During World War II, the Cushman became almost as ubiquitous as the Jeep, Ray-Ban and Hallicrafters, and the scooters are familiar in old movies and newsreels.Cushman Logo

Cushman still makes small cars and golf carts. But now is not a good time for golf carts at golf course communities. And Cushman’s parent company Textron (NYSE: TXT) is slightly struggling; it is not a good time for private market Cessnas and Bell Helicopters. (Do peruse the Textron website; Textron makes some great products, including the Cessna Caravan.)

But perhaps now is the time to take that Cushman idea, and bring it back to revive the Cushman Scooter, or at least the Cushman brand. Cheap transportation does well in a downturn.

When we saw the restored scooter in Currituck, N.C., the owner said that he always had wanted a Cushman as all the rich kids in Norfolk, Virginia had them when he was young in the 1930s and 1940s.

Looking at the Cushman Scooter today, we see how the brand could not only be used on a new scooter, but could be licensed for a whole line of products.

Bring Cushman back.

12 Comments

  1. I am familiar w/ the great old reputation of Cushman scooters – they are a classic! I remember seeing them around, when I was a child.

  2. I would love to see a modern verson of the cushman step thru. I believe Most Americans who like scooters would prefer one that was American made. After my experance with Chinese scooters I know I would. If you know of any retro remakes or modern american versions please let me know about them.
    Thanks
    Surfindaddy

  3. Surfindaddy, I have found a website of a man who is making new Cushman Eagle look alikes and you should check this out:
    “nottacushman.com


  4. well written. I would love to find a rebuild step through Cushman but they are either hard to find or terribly expensive

  5. I have a 1955 baby blue cushman PACEMAKER
    If anyone is interested i have several pics of this.I purchased this from an elderly gentleman in my area..Email me…And I will sen you a pic..


  6. Melissa, I had two Cushman Pacemaker/Roadking scooters and I just loved them alot. I would enjoy seeing your Baby Blue Pacemaker Scooter………Thank You 🙂

  7. I have done some more research and found that the “Notacushman” website is shut down due to the scooter maker has totally discontinued manufacturing. However, there is a new company who is in the L.A.,CA. area who are manufacturing some Cushman Scooters now and they are tooling up soon to start manf. of the most popular Cushman Eagle. The company is called “Cushman II” located in Gardena, Ca. and a Div. of K-Jack Motors, LLC. They have a website, If you are a Cushman Scooter lover like I am, check it out (I am waiting for one myself)………Happy Scoot Scoot 🙂

  8. An update on K-Jack Motors in California who are Mfg new Cushman II Motor Scooters……..They are currently working on a Cushman II Eagle Prototype Scooter and hopefully it will be coming off the Production Line soon !!!!! The Company said check their Web Site for all updates on this new scooter. This is the One I have been waiting for. If anybody gets new information as to this Scooter Production and sale date, please post it for all.

  9. anybody know someone who works on vintage cushmans near Cincinnati, Ohio


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