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Micro-EV concept being tested in Singapore

What’s the best way to go electric in regions like Southeast Asia? The answer – go small.

The National University of Singapore and Toyota Tsusho Asia Pacific Ltd. will be looking at the durability, performance and economical value of the single-seater EV concept in tropical climatic conditions for short distance travelling.

The collaborative study intends to come up with a sustainable vehicle-sharing scheme that might surmount the last mile and environmental concerns for future city mobility.

Users’ travelling behavior and patterns, charging behavior will be studied to identify efficient locations to put up charging stations and maximize the distribution of micro vehicles within the campus.

Systems and procedures that would be needed in larger scale operations of the EV’s will also be devised.

The researchers will be using 10 Toyota Auto Body C.O.M.S., whose initials stand in Japanese for “smooth, short rides into town.” Each vehicle can travel between 35 kilometers to 45 kilometers using sealed lead-acid batteries. With a 300-kilogram weight, it can run at a limited speed of 50 kilometers per hour.

The EVs’ running costs are around $0.03 cents per kilometer. The vehicle, is 93 percent made up recyclable parts. It uses regenerative braking and, of course, they’re zero-emission.

A fleet of 10 micro electric vehicles will be deployed in the university campus over the next year.

Using as wireless connection, the vehicles and users will be linked to a “telematics hub” that will register data for analysis and management use. These data will be processed to generate information for specific groups of users.

“The behavioral needs of the next generation of consumers have to be satisfied in order to create a sustainable business model,” said Toyota Tsusho executive vice president Yasuhiro Kakihara.

“The launch of this project will pave the way for a new mode of transportation in Singapore to benefit the society as a whole.” – EcoSeed Staff

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