Electric trikes coming to the Philippines
September 10, 2013
If you've ever visited the Philippines, you're probably familiar with the unique taxis that are a primary source of transportation among urban areas. The "trikes" are three-wheeled vehicles that can easily scoot around the bustling roadways. Soon, many of those taxis will look different, as the nation is gearing up to introduce electric trikes in some of its major cities, according to InsideEVs. It's an exciting time for locals in the country, and it may even prompt some people to book a trip to see the new taxis. If so, travelers will certainly need a calling card to the Philippines in order to plan their visit.
The nation will invest as much as $500 million by 2017 to replace around 100,000 of the current taxis, which are fueled by gas, with electric ones. However, the transition doesn't end there, because there are around 3.5 million taxis in the country right now. This means that over time, it's likely there will be more electric taxis added to the fleet.
The Philippines isn't the only nation that is making the switch to electric. The news source reports that nearby Laos is looking to convert nearly 40 percent of their taxis to electric vehicles by 2020. This will include not only the trikes there, but also motorbikes and four-wheeled vehicles.
Unfortunately, there is a small hiccup in the Philippines plan. While Laos uses hydro-electric power within its own border, the Philippines purchases electricity from nearby countries. This may eventually cause an issue, as fluctuating markets can impact fuel prices, making it difficult for the Philippines to get enough electricity to power their new electric fleet.
The Philippines may be on the cutting edge of the electronic taxi movement, as it looks like some other nations are planning to make their own switch in the coming years. Recently, at the Frankfurt auto show, Nissan revealed that it had signed an agreement with Barcelona, Spain, to help make the city a bit greener. That city may use the Nissan e-NV200 taxi, which is 100 percent electric, according to Automotive World.
"We want to put the talent, creativity and innovation of Barcelona to support the new sustainability sectors," said the city's mayor, Andy Palmer, the news source reports. He called the move "a step forward to reinforce the role of Barcelona as a leading city in zero-emission taxis and urban goods distribution."