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Not An Electric but Still a thought - Bajaj Qute


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When I first saw the Bajaj Qute, I thought this was an awesome vehicle/ Although it isn't exactly a "solar" solution, it came across a a beautiful solution for our daily environment.

I then took the trip to Jhb (I am a KZN boy) to test drive this almost amazing new "car"....

I cannot fault the specifications on this vehicle, I was amazed at the "normality" of this vehicle and the fact that it carried more safety certifications than some of the retail vehicles in SA currently.

But it does have it's downfalls...

  • South Africa is not flat - the Qute is not designed for any environment that is not flat, going up a steep local hill can make it's speed hugely dangerous on main roads (eg: it dropped to a max of 30km/hr up a steep hill in KZN and couldn't get faster)
  • It is still a petrol engine, no matter how efficient (So not really an eco-friendly solution)
  • It has a speed limit at 70kph, now not a big problem for general use, this is a huge issue in SA when it it ness not to break laws about min speed on motorways.
  • There is no motor upgrade path that is reasonable and would fix some of the above issues (a 400cc motor could drastically improve... but that is outside my control)

On the good side, it was amazing to drive a "scooter" with all theses features, I loved it and and really would love to own one myself. The negative for my personal use only resided around the lack of power for use in a non-flat area, and the limiter that kicks in at 70km/hr, and of course the ridiculous import price (nearly R75k), for a "scooter" that can't do anything close to a basic scooter available in SA.

Stick a 400cc engine in there and set the limiter at 110km/hr (even if it takes 2 hours to get there) and you would have an awesome product for the SA market, and I would be the first to buy.

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Have been doing a lot of electrical vehicle tests, and we don't care if we get beaten by human athletes. But it is extremely important that a vehicle can behave like a small diesel turbo. That's our benchmark - do 80km up Fields hill, and maintain 110kms on a freeway - very small requirements for an electric car, but nothing has achieved in the SA environs/availability.

We are still working when we have time away from our employment, but hopefully can eventually present something from our side project.

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