Head circumference: the Bermi Bully electric bike has a battery that can be fully recharged in 2h30. It is estimated to travel between 30 and 40 miles fully loaded on a flat course, or further if the rider is also pedaling (Photo by Blaire Simmons)
Electric vehicles make perfect sense for a place like Bermuda, and they can add a touch of style and comfort.
That’s the opinion of Mike Swan, who has worked in the electric vehicle business for four years.
He is the Founder and CEO of Localmotion Ltd, which operates Bermi Cars on Happy Valley Road, Pembroke. It has a growing fleet of electric cars that can accommodate a driver and passenger side by side.
The last electric transportation to arrive at Localmotion is the Bermi Bully – a bicycle with an electric motor to assist the rider.
“It turns heads. It’s a statement about who you are,” Mr Swan said.
The electric bike is made in Italy by Moto Parilla and can be powered by a 250W or 750W motor – the smaller motor meets the upper limit allowed for electric bikes in Europe.
On paper, the e-bike has a range of 40 to 50 miles on a charged battery, depending on the grade of the road, the amount of throttle used, and the amount of pedaling the rider has to pedal.
Mr Swan estimates that the electric bike could travel 35 to 40 miles on a flat course using only the electric motor. The battery takes 2.5 hours to recharge when empty.
The bikes have big street tires and there are three different frame designs. They cost $ 10,500 or $ 11,500, depending on the delivery option used to have them imported.
With regard to electric microcars, Bermi Cars has a rental fleet of 10 Bermis. He sold 17 more to private owners.
Eight more Bermis are expected to arrive in July, including four for the rental fleet, and the others on sale.
Mr. Swan’s rental company has an allowance for up to 34 cars. He lightly calls the Bermis “golf cars on steroids”, but they come with air conditioning, stereo, Bluetooth technology, heated folding mirrors and even a rear view camera.
A resident who owns a Bermi and who was at the store when The Royal Gazette visited, excited about the rear view camera and said a much more expensive gasoline car he still owned didn’t even have one.
Mr. Swan said: “Customers are very satisfied with our cars.”
There are a few electric microcars rental operations on the island, but Mr Swan believes Bermis stands out as being above the rest. It also plans to bring in a new “fully equipped” electric microcar in the near future.
He said: “People say our cars are the best in the market for comfort. We are trying to position ourselves as the Rolls-Royce in the rental market.”
It does not compare microcars to Rolls Royces, but does refer to the higher specs offered compared to similar cars, as well as Localmotion’s “best quality of personalized service”.
Mr Swan said electric vehicles made sense for a place like Bermuda and he believes the government, which has already pledged to electrify the bus fleet, could help with wider adoption of electric vehicles on the road. ‘Isle.
“Why not create a new [licence] class lower than class A, something like a microcar class, ”he said.
“Bermuda is a perfect test bed for electric cars. The average commute is about 20 miles per day.
“Charging electric vehicles is not a problem. You can get 70 miles on one charge, so you don’t need charging points around the island as you can charge them at home.”
Mr Swan said the service component for an electric car is less than that of a gasoline car, and he estimates the cost of operating an electric car to be between one-sixth and one-tenth the cost of an electric car. ‘a traditional car.
He added: “We have pressured the government to authorize a second car on an evaluation number, as long as the second car is electric and a microcar.
“You are reducing the number of motorcycles on our roads; we have a lot of people who are educating about these cars for their kids.
“There’s a good chance people won’t use both cars at the same time, and they can choose the small car by default.”
Mr. Swan is pleased with how his business has been going and the team around him, which includes Debbie Araujo, Sales and Leasing Manager, and Service and Fleet Manager Bernell Gibson.
Mr Swan said: “When you have an idea driven by passion and you study your market, you kind of know it’s going to happen.
“It’s the best job I’ve had in my life. I love it.”
Localmotion can be reached by calling 519-9255, or by visiting the website at www.localmotionbda.com
Compact tour: The Bermi electric microcar has been a success as a rental vehicle option and for private ownership (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)
Bermi Bully bikes have big street tires and there are three different frame designs (Photograph by Blaire Simmons)