MANILA - Despite the constant call to lower the carbon footprint by shifting to electronic vehicles, its initial costs are simply prohibitive to many, especially public utility vehicle (PUV) drivers.
One US-based start-up company is hoping their innovation can bring down the prices of e-tricycles and encourage more to shift to the electric option by offering battery packs that can be leased and loaded with credits for use.
TalinoEV Management Systems Inc. has introduced a step-up to the typical electronic package of the battery management system--a sim card allotment.
"Because we can connect to the server, we can monitor the energy usage, the kilowatt hour just like in Meralco sense, of the battery in real time. And we can now charge the person based on the kilowatt hour because we can monitor it," said Henry Abreu, founder and president of TalinoEV.
In TalinoEV's battery management system (BMS), the battery of the e-vehicle will run until the prepaid credits in the sim card completely run out.
Abreu said they are taking inspiration at the boom of mobile phones in the Philippines via the prepaid cellular service concept.
"We feel that what will make electric vehicles ubiquitous in the Philippines also is the same concept of prepaid use, but instead of calling and text messages, it's now kilowatt hour usage of your battery," he said.
TalinoEV has deployed 50 EV units, with half a dozen different companies using their system.
They are charging P27 to P30 per kilowatt hour, and the e-vehicle drivers spend less with the TalinoEV BMS because the BMS itself is on lease.
The e-tricycles with TalinoEV currently use regular lithium-ion chargers, but TalinoEV is building its own public charging station, and Abreu said their next phase will be finding the right telecommunications partner.
Abreu said they chose to venture first into the Philippine market, not only in homage to their Filipino roots, but also because they see a potential in the Filipino e-vehicle manufacturers.
"Our real clients are the EV manufacturers here in the Philippines. And there is a good marriage because they need battery technology. They know how to build the vehicle, but they don't have the expertise on the battery and the battery management system," he said.