TVS King - from hybrid to a commercial steed

March 9th, 2008 - 7:22 pm ICT by admin  


Chennai, March 9 (IANS) TVS King, the three-wheeler launched by TVS Motor Company Ltd Sunday here, has undergone an interesting transformation over the past six years. In 2002, the company had showcased a hybrid auto-rickshaw in an auto show in Chennai, which looked different from the TVS King model.

The vehicle looked liked Bajaj Auto Ltd’s three-wheeler but different in its heart, steering and body.

The hardtop three-wheeler, which looked like Bajaj Auto Ltd’s three-wheeler, would run the first 20 km on battery powered by a 36V 25AH traction battery and later automatically switch over to petrol, the company claimed.

The vehicle was fitted with 175cc engine and with slight modifications it could be powered by liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) or compressed natural gas (CNG).

The fuel tank capacity was eight litres as against five litres in TVS King.

The 335-kg hybrid vehicle had more interesting features like seating capacity (three rear and two at the front), five gears (four forward and one reverse) and a steering wheel unlike the conventional handle bar, and the body built of composites.

The vehicle was fitted with multi-reflector headlight.

However, TVS King comes in three engine variants - petrol, LPG and CNG- and is powered by 200cc engine.

The vehicle has a conventional seating capacity - three rear and driver at the front - and has a handle bar.

“The hybrid version was a concept vehicle. We found hybrid couldn’t be produced in India due to the current laws,” said H.S. Goindi, senior vice-president, international business and three-wheelers, TVS Motors.

He said some of the unique features had to be dropped as they would make the end product costlier than the competing vehicles.

According to Goindi the company’s current focus is to launch a four-stroke three-wheeler and then think about the sub one tonne goods carrier.

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