Innovation That Matters

The going is green (and electric)

Mobility & Transport

Designed in California and manufactured in India, GoinGreen‘s G-Wiz electric cars are a hit in London, where the company has sold over 600 units, making London the electric car capital of the world. GoinGreen, which was founded in 2004 and has received numerous new business awards, did so purely by word of mouth – without dealers, showrooms, advertising, or sales staff. The company cuts costs by selling directly to consumers through its online store. No need for showrooms, either. Interested consumers can make an appointment to test-drive a vehicle at one of four locations in and around London. Potential emission-free drivers have a choice of two models, aptly named AC and DC. The standard DC model has a maximum range of 40 miles, can go up to 40 mph and is priced at GBP 5,956. Its slightly faster (45 mph) sibling features optional extras like leather seats, remote central locking, and batteries that are upgradeable to hi-performance lithium-ion. AC is available in a variety of colours, including leopard and tiger prints, and is priced from GBP 6,807. Unlike most electric vehicles, the G-Wiz can seat four. Besides saving on gas, G-Wiz drivers in London are also exempt from paying the city’s congestion charge of GBP 8 per day and don’t have to pay road tax, either. Some neighbourhoods also offer free parking for electric vehicles. Limited range and speed are hardly an issue in the city, where most trips are short and traffic doesn’t usually allow for speeds over 15 mph. (To see the G-Wiz in action, check out this video.) Green to the core, GoinGreen not only lobbies for a switch to emission free transport, but also off-sets CO2 produced in the manufacturing, delivery and first two year’s driving of every car they sell. Offsets are bought from Climate Care, which uses the money to fund CO2 reduction projects. GoinGreen is the first retailer to sell a large number of this model, which is known as Reva in its native India. Reva is said to be the cheapest commercially produced electric car in the world, and suggested niche markets include small island nations (expensive to get fuel to), and postal delivery services, whose vehicles stop and start frequently and don’t need to drive at high speeds. Interested in selling a racier battery-powered ride? Check out Tesla, which is building electric roadsters that will be available for purchase in early 2007, with an anticipated delivery date of fall 2007. A Tesla Roadster can do zero to 60 mph in about 4 seconds, has a top speed of over 130 mph and a range of 250 miles. Plenty of opportunities for emission free entrepreneurs!



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