The three-wheeled auto rickshaws or Tuk-tuks are common means of transportation in Asia. Like any other gas guzzlers, tuk-tuks are also suppliers of adversities to the environment. The tuk-tuk emits a much larger amount of CO2 than other vehicles in a particular region. Things seem to be changing for the better now.
Terra Motors, a Tokyo-based startup, craves to make Earth a better planet by reducing urban pollution. Doing their part in sustaining the greener layers of the atmosphere, they have developed a six-seat electric tuk-tuk or the e-trike.
They are aiming to replace 100,000 gas-powered tuk-tuks in Manila, the capital city of Philippines, with electric tricycles. Tying up with the Philippines government and backed by a $300 million loan from Asian Development Bank, the program is set for a completion by 2016.The vehicle will start selling later this year priced at $6,300.
According to the company, the e-trikes can go 31 miles from a two hour charging. Adopting an e-trike would save $5 per day on fuel charges when compared with the average running cost.
The price point however is a major challenge for the company. Since gas-powered tuk-tuks are available in the $1000 -$1500 range and can provide more mileage than the e-trikes, the company will need to strategize to make a convincing price point.