By Andrew Liszewski
While I think the concept of motorized luggage is kind of frivolous, there have been many times while traveling where I would have loved to have one. And while the LiveLuggage PA Series is the first power-assisted suitcase I’ve ever seen, it actually incorporates a lot of great ideas. Each of the large wheels features an electric motor which can make dragging the suitcase feel like you’re actually dragging a small backpack. But there’s no ‘throttle’ button on the handle. Instead, it uses sensors to detect when you’ve started to pull the suitcase at which point the motors will kick in making the job a lot easier. It also has what the company calls an ‘anti-gravity’ handle which causes the suitcase to lean back while you’re pulling it which places about 85% of its weight directly onto the wheels.
The motors are powered by a rechargeable 12V NiMH battery which will run for about 2 hours on a single charge. It does come with a built-in charger, but it’s also able to use the wheels as a generator whenever the power assist isn’t required. (Like when the suitcase is being rolled downhill.) Finally, when it comes to security the LiveLuggage includes a TSA approved tumbler lock which can be easily opened by security personnel, as well as a ‘Live Locator’ feature which is basically a unique serial number on every piece of luggage that makes it easier to identify the owner through the company’s database.
With a price tag of $1,365.25 I suspect the LiveLuggage PA Series will probably only appeal to the most frequent of travelers who are worried about what hauling their regular suitcase is doing to their spine.