Regular readers of the news on this website will know that throughout 2008, Denmark has seen a convoy of electric and hybrid electric automobile manufacturers announcing plans to enter the Danish market, following the government's decision as part of its new energy policy to tax-exempt electric cars until at least 2012.
Shai Agassi's Renault/Nissan-backed Better Place electric car scheme, Sweden's Volvo and Saab, France's Aixam, USA's Tesla Motors, Germany's Mercedes-Benz and China's rapidly developing BYD (Build Your Dreams) are already lining up with electric &/or hybrid electric vehicles to grab a slice of the incipient action. Now yet another competitor is joining the fray, according to professional journal Ingeniøren (The Engineer) – India's Reva Electric Car Company.
The REVAi is currently the world's top-selling electric car, a small 3-door hatchback intended for short-range travel and commuting, particularly in congested urban areas. There is nothing very high-tech about the car's battery technology, its electrical power source consisting of conventional lead-acid batteries that account for nearly 40% of the vehicle's weight. Indeed, the maximum passenger and cargo weight is less than the weight of the batteries. But charging requires no special infrastructure. Any plug in the wall will do.
Performance figures for the REVAi are not what one would call electrifying. Top speed is around 75 kph (47 mph), and the range on a full charge is reported by Ingeniøren to be 50 km (31 miles). But then as mentioned, the REVAi is essentially designed for short-haul commuting in stop-start traffic conditions.
The list price of the REVAi (including a little diesel powered heater) is DKK 128,130 (USD 23,920).