Singapore is testing out several electric vehicle (EV) prototypes and technologies. The Electric Vehicle Taskforce led by EMA and LTA announced the launch of the electric vehicle test-bed on Sat [25 Jun
2011]. The aim of the test-bed is to test different EV prototypes and charging technologies in Singapore’s urbanised environment. The test-bed will be at 3 outdoor and 2 indoor charging stations and involve 5 Mitsubishi i-MiEVs and 4 Smart Daimler electric cars. From 9, the number of electric cars taking part in this test-bed is expected to grow to 95 before the trial ends in 2013. By then, there will also be 63 charging stations. The 5 stations will collect data on charging patterns as part of the test-bed. The data will also help determine the optimal ratio of charging stations to vehicles.
The charging stations will be installed near the homes or offices of test-bed participants and it will cost a flat rate of S$180 per month for unlimited charging of their electric vehicles. After a full charge of over 8 hours, the electric cars can run for about 90km to 160km. Companies interested in the test can apply for the TIDES-PLUS scheme which waives all vehicle taxes such as ARF, COE, road tax and excise duty for 6 years. The LTA said the cost of buying a Mitsubishi i-MiEV, for example, is about S$90,000 after waiving vehicle taxes under the scheme.
– Finally, the official testing of Singapore’s first batch of fully electric cars seems to be taking off, after a roughly 1-year delay during which the rest of the world has been moving further ahead. The electric cars such as the Mitsubishi i-Miev are no longer prototypes as the article claims, but are now full-fledged production vehicles wth retail sales started since Apr 2010.
Yes, there are people keeping track of such things and I happen to be one of them. Back in 2009, the article that ran said that the test-bed was "expected to run for three years (2010-2012)". It is now 2011 and the trial is supposed to end in 2013. Looks like everything has shifted 1 year. In addition (or rather, subtraction), V2G (Vehicle-to-Grid) is no longer mentioned. The scale of the test also seems to have been reduced. At the end of 2009, it was reported that 50 Mitsubishi i-MiEV electric cars will make their way here from Sep 2010. The trial seems to have started with only 5 i-Miev’s (down from 50) and another 4 Smart electric cars. In 2010, it was initially said that there would be 26 charging stations which can do 8-hour charges, with one of them being a "quick charge station [that] can do so in 45 minutes". We are down to 5 charging stations and no mention of a 45-minute quick charge station.
Like I’ve said before, yes, it is good that the Singapore government is looking at adopting electric vehicle technology. But now I have to say that we have got to move quite a bit faster if Singapore is to have any kind of leadership position in technology adoption or transition to the post-Peak Oil era. Not only do we need to move faster in adopting alternative transportation technologies, but also in adopting alternative energy technologies. But that, is a story for another day.
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