Download now: Cannabis Cash

Electric Vehicle Taxicabs Enter Hong Kong Market

Nissan, BYD, and Toyota Provide EVs

Written by Swagato Chakravorty
Posted December 26, 2012 at 6:21PM

Electric vehicles are making their presence known in Hong Kong—in the form of taxicabs. Early adopters are quite critical, of course, of the standard EV issues (small driving range, charging infrastructure, and so on), but Hong Kong in particular suffers from a major emissions problem, and vehicular pollution accounts for almost 17 percent of all greenhouse gas emissions according to the government.

Back in April, numbers for EVs were dismal. Out of more than 550,000 vehicles in the city, just 310 were wholly electric. However, now that taxi companies are increasingly mulling over transitioning to EVs, it could mean a significant victory for electric vehicles considering there are more than 18,000 taxicabs plying Hong Kong’s roads.

Nissan (TYO: 7201), for example, stated that it would introduce 50 Leaf EV taxis in 2013 and follow that up with 100 NV200 electric vans. These latter are already pegged for use as taxicabs in London and New York.

China’s BYD expressed its intention to introduce the e6 EV as a taxi, and Fiat (BIT: F) is considering the same with its Doblo electric van. Toyota (NYSE: TM), too, claimed to have received orders for 20 hybrid taxicabs.

From SmartPlanet:

“Most people in Hong Kong still have some reservations about using electric cars,” said Eric Cheng, professor of electrical engineering at Hong Kong Polytechnic University.

While EVs could see real gains in public perception through introduction via the taxicab route, this sword cuts both ways. Taxicabs in particular require long-range possibilities. Most taxis, for example, drive up to 400 kilometers per shift, while EV ranges hover around 100 kilometer per charge.

That is going to be a concern, especially given the meager charging infrastructure in the city (about 1,000 charging ports).

But the government is providing hefty subsidies to promote the use of greener vehicles in public transportation, so it may as well be a start to greater things to come.

Related Articles

GE WattStation EV Chargers
GE's new electric vehicle charging stations are now synced with an app to make finding them easier.
A Cheaper EV Battery
Energy Power Systems thinks improving the life of an older battery is the key to reducing EV prices.
EV Battery Recycling
Old EV batteries still have 70% of their power potential. GM (NYSE: GM), ABB (NYSE: ABB), and Duke Energy (NYSE: DUK) want to put this to use...


Is it Safe for You to Buy Coal Stocks Yet?
Shedding Light on the Death of the Coal Industry
Without the ITC, is Solar Still a Good Investment?
Will THIS Kill the Solar Industry?
Investing in the Future of Solar
How to Profit Like an Investment Banker
The Secret Behind the Gatwick Gusher
Is the UK Running Out of Options?
Buffett Has a $4.5 Billion Stake in This Refiner
Refiners Are Safe Havens During the Low-Price Period
An OPEC Civil War Erupts
Strange Things Afoot in the House of Saud
Energy Utilities NEED the Internet of Things
Stay connected to stay on target!
The Lithium Revolution Just Got Hotter
Utility-Scale Lithium Batteries Taking Off
Metal Oil Investing 101
Meet the Oil of the 21st Century
Tesla's (NASDAQ: TSLA) Final Deathblow
The Ultimate Tesla Play