By Lloyd Alter, December 23, 2013
The air pollution in Chinese cities is legendary; when I was there recently you could barely see across Tiananmen Square. The traffic is like none North Americans have ever seen as well; Six rings of highways in Beijing, every road completely jammed with cars at all hours of the day. Then there is the problem of parking all those cars, there is just nowhere to put them all.
That's why this car sharing system from Kandi Technologies Group makes so much sense. KTG makes a little Smart-car like electric car that can go 75 miles at up to 50 MPH. They store the cars in giant vertical vending machines that deliver the car on demand. They rent for $3.25 per hour.
It is modelled after Hangzhou's bike share system, the largest in the world. People aspire to an enclosed vehicle that can carry their families and stuff safely instead of piling on to scooters. The cities are dense enough to support vending machines close enough to where people live.
Film Maker Aaron Rockett describes how the system will grow.
Kandi's plan is to build with both Government and "outside" support, 750 of these garages in just the City of Hangzhou over the next four years through a 50-50 joint venture with Geely Automotive, China's largest passenger automaker, which would require some 100,000 Kandi electric vehicles to stock them. This model is slated to spread to other cities and regions like Shanghai, Shandong, and Hainan. Two garages were just completed in Hangzhou over the past two months and another 18 are currently under construction