Give it a quick charge and you're ready to roll. Tricia Wright goes eco-friendly...
Published: 02 May 2006
The Twike may sound like a three-wheeled contraption that Jonathan Ross has bought, but this two-seater electric car is a serious proposition.
Unlike the infamous Sinclair C5, which pretty much discredited the idea of electric transport for two decades, this one is properly engineered and even has a roof. There is only one snag: the price. For most potential buyers, the initial outlay of £15,000 will stretch the bounds of eco-friendship to the very limit. Yes, you can indeed buy a Mazda MX-5, say, or a Mini Cooper convertible for that sort of money, or two of its nearest competitor the Indian-built Reva G-Wiz electric car, but the Twike is a different eco-proposition.
Low ownership costs do defray at least some of the high price You don't pay road tax, congestion charges in London, or for parking in some places. When you consider that parking can cost £40 a day in central London, this is quite a factor, says Andreas Schroeer, the man responsible for importing these quirky little German vehicles into the UK. Throw fuel into the equation and the commuter averaging 50 miles a day will save around £5,000 a year in a Twike. It costs about 20p to "fill up" a Twike, by plugging it into the mains.
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