Minghong Vehicles started making advanced electric tricycles in 1995, and the company is now the largest e-tricycle manufacturer in Southwest China. In 2018, the company partnered with the United Nations Development Program (UNDP) to deliver eco-friendly electric vehicles for commercial use in Cuba.
The program, which began in 2018, delivers opportunities for women and other small business owners to offer electric taxi rides in busy cities like Havana, where the electric tricycles are easier to maneuver through narrow streets and over challenging road conditions.
In addition, Minghong is expanding its operations in Cuba for commercial use. The company’s electric tricycles showcase the benefits of using electric vehicles to tow cargo, make deliveries, and reduce energy use.
As more Cubans discover the benefits of electric tricycles, the island country is experiencing more ways to deliver in-demand services and save energy.
The Benefits of E-Vehicles in Developing Countries
Electric vehicles are a fantastic opportunity in developing countries because they’re easier to maintain, versatile, and require no fossil fuels. Here are some of the main benefits Cubans see through the increased adoption of Minghong electric tricycles.
Lower Startup Costs
Minghong’s partnership with the UNDP makes e-tricycles affordable for Cuban families and aspiring business owners. As a result, the subsidized program is changing how business is done on bustling Cuban streets. Visitors to the city can spot UNDP-sponsored Minghong tricycles picking up and dropping off customers in a sustainable fashion.
Even without subsidy, e-tricycles are much more affordable than larger, gas-powered vehicles. Cubans and people in other developing countries can build taxis, delivery vehicles, and reliable transportation for a fraction of the cost.
One of the most significant benefits of e-vehicles is that they’re much easier to maintain. Entrepreneurs can learn essential maintenance that keeps vehicles on the road longer. In addition, owners don’t have to change oil, and engines are typically much more straightforward while still providing excellent performance.
Introducing Minghong electric vehicles into Cuba is helping locals build technical skills related to environmentally-friendly industries. They learn how to work with batteries, electrical systems, and vehicle chassis.
Reduced Reliance on Fossil Fuels
Small countries like Cuba stand to benefit significantly from the increased adoption of e-tricycles and other battery-powered transportation. Cuba must rely on imports for oil and other fossil fuel supplies as an island country. E-vehicles make renewable systems based on solar, wind, and water a reality.
These are just some of the benefits of electric tricycles. Governments, businesses, and families are discovering the difference e-trikes can make regarding cost and ease of use.
Results in Cuba a Roadmap for Other Developing Countries
Minghong, in conjunction with the United Nations Development Program, has made quite an impact in Cuba. Last year, for example, women e-trike drivers made over 92,000 trips carrying more than 724,000 passengers.
The Cuban Minister of Transport, Eduardo Rodriguez, and Maribel Gutierrez, Resident Representative of the UNDP, announced the program’s launch at its inauguration. Both leaders extolled the program’s benefits and said the initial launch would serve as a model for future growth in sustainable transportation.
For now, most of the trips happened in Havana, which has high congestion levels. All of these electric tricycle trips occur without fossil fuel emissions and unnecessary engine idling.
To make the tricycles more accessible, Cubans interested in driving the vehicles to earn money pay a daily fee to the National Tributary Administration. Then, they get to use the eco-taxi to offer local residents rides around the city.
According to research, each tricycle driver drives around 100 kilometers daily over eight hours of work. In addition, the local government is working to establish public transportation routes that use electric tricycles. So far, they’re operating three routes with 25 vehicles, each carrying up to six passengers per trip.
The program is projected to grow in Cuba and serves as an effective model for other developing nations.
Adopting Electric Vehicles to Combat Climate Change
The adoption of Minghong electric tricycles is helping the Cuban government and residents combat climate change. In an island nation susceptible to the impact of climate change, the use of eco taxis and other sustainable transportation lower costs and dependence on fossil fuels.
The first eco taxi routes launched in 2020 with over 20 electric tricycles. In addition, the Ministry of Transportation constructed a photovoltaic park with over 10 KW of power connected to the national grid capable of charging the vehicles.
Minghong’s smaller, adaptable electric tricycles bring sustainable transportation to life. The small vehicles make them ideal for use in narrow roadways and other tight spaces. In addition, they’re easy to store, and drivers can quickly learn how to operate them.
One of the main challenges of many green transportation products is that they’re hard to operate. However, Minghong tricycles are easy to use and require very little training. They’re safe, reliable, and run on less energy than larger gas-powered or electric vehicles.
E-Vehicles Providing Opportunities for Local Technical Skills
The delivery of Minghong vehicles to Cuba offers local businesses and workers increased economic opportunities.
The e-tricycles are assembled and shipped to Cuba. However, each vehicle needs routine maintenance, like changing tires, windshields, and other repairs. In addition, local transport companies also enjoy outfitting each tricycle with branding, different seating configurations, and other features.
Local ecosystems are built around assembling, repairing, and customizing electric vehicles. In the future, entire businesses will be built around managing fleets of e-tricycles for taxi organizations and individual users.
In the future, developing countries may import vehicles from Minghong and adapt them to appropriate local conditions or transportation regulations.
Minghong Vehicles Positioned for Future Growth
Minghong, for its part, is ready to support more programs in developing nations worldwide. An established electric tricycle manufacturer in China for decades, Minghong is growing its reach to help deliver green transportation solutions internationally.
Currently, Minghong is sending products to more than 45 countries, and their products have a reputation for quality and performance. They focus intensely on green energy vehicles and how tricycles can improve the quality of life in developing countries.