Electric Vehicle "mycar" Makes First Journey in Hong Kong
SEE ALSO: EV-MOTORING.COM
Hong Kong China October 23, 2009; The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) and EuAuto Technology Limited (EuAuto) today jointly announced the official launch of their home-grown electric vehicle mycar in Hong Kong. The launching ceremony was held at PolyU campus with Mr John Tsang Chun-wah, Financial Secretary of the HKSAR Government, Prof. Timothy W. Tong, President of PolyU, and Mr Peter Sun, Chairman of EuAuto Technology Limited as the officiating guests.
With its body designed by internationally renowned Italian car designer Giorgetto Giugiaro, mycar has obtained the World Manufacturer Identification (WMI) Code earlier this year and it went on sales in many European countries including the United Kingdom, France, Italy, Austria and Denmark.
It is the first Hong Kong-developed vehicle which fully complied with European standards, and also the first home-grown vehicle to hit the international market.
This year mycar has successfully met the roadworthiness requirements stipulated by the Government’s Transport Department and has recently been granted the vehicle type-approval as a private car. It is now available for sale in Hong Kong on the condition of travelling on roads with a speed limit at or under 50km/h.
The NEV version of mycar available in the local market has also been on sales in the European market. It can travel a distance of 110km on flat roads and can reach a maximum speed of 64km/h. It requires six to eight hours to be fully charged, which can be done from any regular household socket. It is capable of running on the road for 20 km and takes only 1.5 hour to recharge fully again.
PolyU President Prof. Tong said at the ceremony, “PolyU prides itself on its quality application-oriented R&D and close ties with business and industry. The development of mycar has truly testified to the practical value and commercial potential of PolyU’s R&D pursuits. Not only does mycar go in line with the Government’s policy address in promoting the use of electric vehicles, but also turns over a new leaf in pioneering the advancement of Hong Kong’s automotive industry.”
“Before EuAuto, no automobile manufacturing business has ever been developed in Hong Kong. It was a dream to build a micro car in Hong Kong back in 2003. To make this dream come true, we know we need and we do contribute our greatest effort to engage expertise around the world. With the magic touch of the famous Italian designer Mr Giugiaro on the styling, complimented with the research and expertise from our strategic partners, PolyU, with supports from various industry partners, government, mycar team expertise from around the world: Italy, France, UK, Canada, Australia, Philippines, China and Hong Kong. This product is now able to balance the European stylish design and good quality at an affordable price to customers all over the world. Our dream of having a home-grown electric vehicle has finally come true!” said Mr Sun, Chairman of EuAuto Technology Limited. The environmentally-friendly, zero-emission mycar will be sold at HK$97,000. To promote the use of electric vehicles, the HKSAR Government has exempted the First Registration Tax Waiver. The annual license fee costs only HK$440.
Both PolyU and EuAuto attach great importance to the further advancement of mycar. Building on the success of mycar, the team will keep up with their research and development efforts to enhance its performance and seek to integrate advanced technology to build a better electric vehicle in the near future.
At the beginning of next year, lithium-battery-driven and upgrade versions of mycar will be launched. There will be a significant improvement for the vehicle in terms of mileage and speed, in order to meet the expectation of Hong Kong’s Eco-car drivers.
In addition to PolyU's backup, mycar has received a funding of HK$2 million from the Hong Kong Innovation and Technology Commission to support its further research and development.
About EuAuto Technology Limited EuAuto Technology Limited is a Hong Kong company, having been funded by Innovation and Technology Commission HKSAR Government. We specialize in design, development, manufacture and sales of environmentally friendly vehicles for global markets. Our first landmark project is mycar. The stylish design was originated by the world class designer - Mr Giorgetto Giugiaro. The electric driving system was co-developed with The Hong Kong Polytechnic University. Our team of expertise composes of professionals from Italy, France, Australia and local industries.
About The Hong Kong Polytechnic University The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) is a university with a proud and illustrious history. Formerly known as the Hong Kong Polytechnic, the Institution assumed full university status in 1994. The University prides itself on its quality application-oriented academic programmes and research and close ties with business and industry. It is the largest publicly-funded tertiary institution in Hong Kong in terms of number of students, with 28,000 full-time and part-time students, and a vast pool of more than 280,000 graduates. Annex 1
Eight Merits of mycar
1) Environmentally friendly – energy saving with zero emissions (No need to switch off engine when left idling! The design of mycar is based on the concept of saving energy such as making use of regenerative brake system, LED taillights, etc.)
2) Low noise level – Experiencing quiet driving
3) Special offer – Exemption from First Registration Tax
4) Cost-saving – HK$440 for annual vehicle license fee (For conventional private cars, minimum charge of annual vehicle license fee is HK$3,929.)
5) Economical – No more expensive fuel (HK$14 / Litre [current price of fuel] vs HK$0.87 / unit [charged by CLP]. Charging up the battery of mycar, which requires 17.6 units, costs HK$15.4 for Kowloon side. When fully charged, mycar can travel 100 km. The consumption is around HK$0.154 / km. It just costs a little bit more than 15 cents! Even if HK Electric charges $1.25 / unit, it only costs 22 cents in every kilometer.)
6) Saving more money – Very low maintenance cost annually (Its maintenance cost is only 10% of conventional private cars)
7) Super convenience – Easy to be recharged (13A domestic socket can be applied. After running on the road for 20 km, it takes only 1.5 hours to recharge fully again.)
8) Chic and Trendy – A masterpiece of modern design (According to individual preference, the micro-car with Italian style designed by famous Italian automobile designer Giorgetto Giugiaro has seven basic colors and 50 special color options for selection. It is a micro car but with full sets of equipments, including electric windows, electric rearview mirror, panoramic sunroof, leather seats, etc.)
Milestones of mycar
In 2003, a brand new concept of first Hong Kong-developed eco-car originated from The Hong Kong Polytechnic University (PolyU) intrigued many people, but the PolyU researchers and the shareholders of EuAuto Technology Limited had faith in its feasibility. The eco-car project, mycar, started with a seed called “Innovation”. At the end of 2003, this concept vehicle, mycar, was debuted at Bologna Motor Show in Italy and immediately drew attention from the European media and its automobile industry upon completion of its outlook design by famous Italian automobile designer Giorgetto Giugiaro.
In 2004, the development of mycar was started in Hong Kong. Since Hong Kong had no foundation of automobile production, developing this “first home-grown vehicle” not only needed the support from the PolyU researchers, but also the participation of the automobile experts from the overseas to lead the research team.
In mid 2005, a diesel-fueled micro-car was successfully developed. However, the oil price rapidly increased in 2005 and Hong Kong was one of the cities being affected most. It led the research team to switch to producing an electric vehicle (EV). The research team considered the importance of finding alternative forms of energy to replace oil as mycar is an eco-car. At the same time, the team realized that the local automobile industry had not paid much attention on EV and believed that mycar could hit the EV market and take the lead. With full support of the shareholders, the development of mycar, therefore, shifted to the EV direction.
In September 2007, the original model of mycar, an eco-car, was launched and subsequently drawn the attention of the overseas market. This has facilitated mycar to launch in the European market.
Year 2008 is the most important milestone for mycar. From the original model to its production, mycar had tackled many difficulties and was being recognized for its product and production plants in Europe.
In 2009, its mass production was commenced. Since the beginning of this year, mycar officially went on sales in many European countries, extending from the United Kingdom to France, Italy, Austria, Denmark, Ireland and so on.
In August 2009, mycar has successfully met the roadworthiness requirements stipulated by the Government’s Transport Department and has recently been granted the vehicle type-approval as a private car. The NEV version of mycar available in the local market has also been on sales in the European market. It can reach a maximum speed of 64 km / h and travel a distance of 80-110 km subject to road condition. It is now available for sale in Hong Kong on the condition of traveling on roads with a speed limited at or under 50 km/h. At the beginning of next year, lithium-battery-driven and upgrade versions of mycar will be launched. There will be a significant improvement for the vehicle in terms of mileage and speed, in order to meet the expectation of Hong Kong’s eco-car drivers. The environmentally-friendly, zero-emission mycar will be sold at HK$97,000. To promote the use of EV, the HKSAR Government has extended the First Registration Tax Waiver. The annual license fee costs only HK$440 and the battery charging fee is around HK$0.15 / km. Annex 3
24 – 26 October 2009 Innovation Show on mycar @Plaza Hollywood 1st floor, Stars Atrium, Plaza Hollywood, Diamond Hill http://www.plazahollywood.com/
31 October 2009 Eco Expo Asia AsiaWorld – Expo http://www.ecoexpoasia.com To experience the first ride on mycar, you may visit the above website for registration.
5 - 8 November 2009 InnoCarnival Hong Kong Science Park http://www.itc.gov.hk/en/news/hot_20091005.htm
21 November 2009 Hong Kong Technology & Renewable Energy Events 2009 Hong Kong Science Park http://www.hk-tree.org/tc/index.html Come to try on mycar!
3 – 5 December 2009 InnoDesign Tech Expo 2009 Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre http://innodesigntechexpo.hktdc.com
Annex 4 Q&A for Electric Car
Q: Why is an electric car environmentally-friendly? A: mycar has zero-emissions and therefore it does not cause air pollution when running on street. The driver does not have to switch off engine when idling. In addition, mycar will not cause noise nuisance when running on street.
Q: How to compare with the electricity and fuel consumption between an electric car and a typical vehicle? A: For example, fuel consumption of a typical 1,100cc vehicle in Hong Kong costs $1 per km while an electric vehicle will only cost HK$0.15 per km for electricity fee. (Note: electricity fee is charged differently in Hong Kong and Kowloon sides.)
Q: Is there any difference in terms of horsepower between an electric car and a typical vehicle? A: Because electric cars have no engines, it is not measured by horsepower. Electric vehicles are generated by electric machinery.
Q: Has an electric vehicle (EV) enough power to drive up slopes? A: The EV mycar can drive up to 20% of slope. The slopes of general vehicular carriageways are below 20%. However, if driving up slopes is frequently required, it is suggested to replace it with another gear box which may affect the speed.
Q: Will an electric vehicle cause the same electricity consumption when driving up slopes and on flat roads? A: No. Driving up slopes needs more energy. Therefore, it will affect the travel distance of the electric vehicle.
Q: How long can mycar travel with battery fully charged? A: 100-110 km subject to the journey. More slopes to drive up will increase electricity consumption. Travel distance thus will be shortened.
Q: Does mycar pass any tests? A: mycar has successfully obtained European homologation and met the roadworthiness requirements stipulated by the Hong Kong Government’s Transport Department.
Q: What is the maximum speed of mycar? A: The NEV version of mycar available in 2009 can reach a maximum speed of 64 km/h or 40 miles/h and is on the condition of traveling on roads in Hong Kong with a speed limit at or under 50km/h.
Q: Can mycar run faster? A: Sure. After changing another set of electric machinery and transmission, the speed and power for driving up slopes can be adjusted.
Q: When will the upgrade version of mycar be available? A: At the beginning of 2010, the upgrade version of mycar will be launched. It can reach a maximum speed at 80 km/hr and drive up 30% of slope.
Q: Is there any indication when an electric vehicle is fully recharged? A: Flashing of the energy indication light indicates the electric vehicle is being recharged. If the light turns green, it is fully recharged. But if the light does not function, you should immediately check the power supply on both sides.
Q: How to know if we have enough time to recharge the electric vehicle when driving it? A: Amount of electricity left will be shown on a meter. An electric vehicle will automatically run slower if it is necessary for recharge.
Q: Is there any specialty or power enhancement required for recharging electric vehicle? A: No. It is like recharging mobile phone. Simply connect the power supply on both sides with 13A domestic sockets.
Q: Is there any difference in terms of repair and maintenance between electric vehicles and typical vehicles? A: Electric vehicles have no internal combustion engines. Therefore, repair and maintenance is simpler. Regularly filling water for the windscreen wipers will be sufficient. If the electric vehicle has a breakdown, you should contact the maintenance company to fix the problems.
Q: How long does the battery of electric vehicle last? A: Lead acid battery can be recharged 5-600 rounds, lasting for around 2 – 3 years. Lithium battery can be recharged 2 – 300 rounds, lasting for around 3 – 5 years.
Q: Can electric vehicle be recharged before the battery is empty? A: Yes. Battery of electric vehicle has no memory function. Therefore, the duration of the battery will be longer by frequent recharging.
Q: How long does it take for a recharge each time? A: It will take 6 – 8 hours from zero to full recharge. After running on the road for 20 km, it takes only 1.5 hours to recharge fully again.
Q: How to keep the duration of the battery longer? A: Follow the manual properly. For example, when it is time for a recharge, you should recharge it. Do not leave it unattended for more than six months.
Q: Can the battery of electric vehicle be replaced like a mobile phone? Can we bring along a back-up battery? A: A certain techniques and procedure are required for changing battery. It is not as simple as what we can do on the mobile phone. Each set of lead acid battery has 240 kg. Therefore, it is not convenient to bring along.
Q: Doe lead acid battery need to add water? A: Perhaps it is needed for some other electric vehicles, but NOT for mycar. The lead acid batteries in mycar are maintenance-free.
Q: Does all electricity energy for electric vehicle come from the same set of lead acid battery? A: Electricity energy for mycar is from two sets of lead acid battery. The set underneath the seats is mainly for generating electric machinery. The rest of the electricity comes from a 12v battery for other accessories such as Hi-Fi, electric element, windscreen wipers, lighting system, etc.
Q: Is there any guideline for cleaning electric vehicles? A: No. It is just same as cleaning other cars. But do not take mycar to a car beautician. Just use a dry/wet towel to wipe it. Do not wash the battery and electric machinery located at the bottom of mycar directly. Q: Do we have to wait next to the electric vehicle when recharging? A: No. Green light will indicate when the battery is fully recharged. During recharging, the recharge function will be terminated until the power supply is re-connected if having a black-out or sockets unplugged. If having electric current overloaded, the safety fuse inside mycar will stop the power automatically.
Q: Will electric vehicle go into a stall when running on street? A: Electric vehicle has not equipped internal combustion engine. Therefore, going into a stall will not happen. However, a meter inside electric vehicle will indicate various problems happened on the vehicle to the driver, including malfunction or over-heated problem of electric machinery and/or electronic system.
Q: Why to sell the body of mycar and its battery separately? A: It is because your may choose either lithium battery or lead acid battery for mycar. Another option for you is to try lead acid battery first and then lithium battery.
Q: Are there any differences between lead acid battery and lithium battery? A: Lead acid battery is heavier, but its capacity is not stronger than lithium battery. The price of lithium battery is 3 – 5 times higher than lead acid battery. However, we can foresee that the cost of lithium battery will surely drop in the future as its needs and supply are increasing.
Q: Is there an instant recharger for electric vehicle? A: Sure. It depends on what kind of battery your electric vehicle equipped.
Q: Will the battery inside the electric vehicle explode? A: Do not worry. All batteries come with warranty and maintenance service.
Q: Is there any warranty for the battery? A: Yes. We offer 2-year warranty for lead acid battery and 3-year warranty for lithium battery.
Q: Is there warranty for mycar? A: Yes. There is 2-year warranty for mycar.
Q: How much does an annual license fee cost? A: HK$440.
Q: How heavy the luggage can my car carry? A: Front luggage space can accommodate 52 litres and the back can carry 88 litres.
Q: Does mycar has to follow the general road regulations? A: Yes. Driving mycar is same as driving those typical vehicles on street. The driver is required to have a driver license and to follow all rules and regulations when driving on street.