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Eco-friendly vehicles on Singapore's roads

2009-08-15 13:13 BJT

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Electric cars and scooters look set to be the next big thing on Singapore's roads, if the enthusiasts are to be believed. These future generation vehicles are green and lean, but are they ready to take on conventional mean machines?

Singapore's first eco-car that runs on hydrogen. The country is motoring towards joining a growing number of countries in Asia that pursue a greener society by exploring use of zero-emission vehicles. Several innovative companies are already offering electric vehicles as a greener alternative in urban transportation.

The Singapore government is also jumping aboard green transport, establishing a multi-agency EV task force to access the benefits, viability and adoption of electric vehicles in the country.

Zeco, a Singapore based company founded in 2008 has distributed electric scooters in the local market to spread its eco message.

It imports E-Max plug-in electric scooters from Germany, which are already proven in the European, US, Japanese and Australian markets. The E-Max scooter has zero emissions and runs almost silently.

According to Zeco, the cost of running an electric scooter works out at only about 50 US cents for every kilometer, and the maintenance costs are approximately 80 percent less than a traditional petrol scooter.

Jan Croeni, Managing director of ZECO Scooters, said, "It saves operation costs...which they usually don't do."

One obstacle that may deter consumers from embracing electric vehicles is the difficulty to charge EVs in Singapore. To help overcome this problem, Zeco came up with the Greenlots concept, an island wide charging network with designated plug in charging points in shopping malls, car parks and offices.

Another company, the Green Car Company, is seeking to build and distribute locally the cheapest electric car in the world.