Most westerners wouldn’t be blamed for not knowing what a ‘Tuk Tuk’ is. Those who have heard the term probably picture it to relate to an old, noisy and primitive vehicle that whizzes through the busy streets of exotic Asian countries. But a tuk tuk is actually a motorized auto rickshaw or any three-wheeler with a cabin for passenger use. Now, Europe may soon see these strange contraptions on its streets too after a Dutch company called the Tuk Tuk Factory recently began developing its own electric tuk tuks for sale in Europe.
A few weeks earlier, the Tuk Tuk Factory launched the e-tuk Vendo, a three-wheeled, all electric powered catering vehicle. Incidentally, the decision to go electric is because conventional gas powered tuk tuks from Asia aren’t able to meet necessary European quality, safety and environmental requirements.
The e-tuk Vendo can provide a range of up to 70 km and can be charged during a stopover. The powerful battery is strong enough to keep the installed refrigerator running while the vehicle is in motion. When the tuk tuk reaches its destination, it needs to be plugged into a main power outlet so that its water pumps, refrigerator and other onboard systems don’t drain the battery. For additional power, the e-tuk has also been installed with a roof mounted solar panel.
The vehicle runs on a 72 volt AC motor, capable of pushing it to speeds of up to 50 kmph, just enough for city streets. It has 3m3 of space on the right side while the rear serves as a cargo storage area. The vehicle’s side covers can be slid open to form a canopy top and a folding table can also be pulled out.
Tuk Tuk Factory has already come up with a few variants called the e-tuk Classico which comes with three seats in the rear and the e-tuk Limo which provides six seats in the back. The base model will sell for 24,000 Euros with a waiting period of three to four months.