Love City residents have an environmentally friendly and economically feasible option for zooming around the island without ever having to go to the gas station.
Angie Bared has brought St. John the first completely electric cars in the United States which meet all federal requirements to be street legal.
The neighborhood electric vehicles are licensed General Motors Hummer 3 products manufactured in California specifically with the island’s topography in mind.
“I was in contact with the manufacturer and sent him copies of maps showing the topography of St. John,” said Bared. “He designed these prototypes just for the Virgin Islands.”
Bared has the exclusive distributorship of the H3 electric vehicles for the U.S. and British Virgin Islands and the Bahamas called Island Hummer. The long-time St. Thomas resident, who now calls St. John home, has been driving her own white four-seater around Love City for the past two weeks and has gotten quite a response.
“People definitely check the car out when I go by,” Bared said. “I can’t even go near the ferry dock. All the tourists want to know where they can rent one.”
The automatic vehicles are constructed of three components: a speed control; eight six-volt batteries and a motor. They take an hour and a half to charge which lasts about 35 miles with speeds of up 28 miles per hour on St. John, Bared explained.
35 Miles Per Charge
“Stateside they last for about double that time, but with all the hills here 35 miles is still good,” she said. “You just plug the vehicle right into your 11-volt house system and there you go. You never have to go to the gas station again.”
With zero carbon dioxide emissions, residents can feel good about driving the electric vehicle.
“They are totally environmentally friendly,” said Bared. “This contributes to being a part of the global movement to make our world cleaner and to lower carbon dioxide emissions.”
While Bared has driven her electric H3 up Jacob’s Ladder and Trunk Bay Hill, she acknowledged the neighborhood electric vehicle is not designed for daily commuting between Coral Bay and Cruz Bay.
Focus on Resorts
“The primary focus is really for the hotels and resorts to use the vehicles,” Bared said. “They would be a great amenity to offer guests.”
They are also great for going to the beaches and around town and stuff,” she explained.
“They are really meant for tooling around the island,” the environmentally-friendly car distributor continued. “They are not meant for a main vehicle, but they are great for a second vehicle.”
Easy To Park
The compact vehicles could also go a long way toward solving the island’s parking problems.
And with a ticket price of $14,500 in addition to the money saved by not purchasing gasoline they are actually affordable.
Also, they are just plain fun to drive, explained Bared.
A family tragedy inspired the environmental entrepreneur to launch her new company about eight months ago.
“I lost my mother and we were in the Bahamas for a ceremony and it just reminded me of the way St. Thomas used to be with all the small cars,” said Bared. “Then I was in Orlando and there was an annual golf show taking place. That’s where I met the manufacturer and the owner of the company and I signed a contract to be the distributor here.”
Electric vehicles are the way of the future and are gaining in popularity from Maui to Florida. Locally, Bared has already gotten a positive response from the Love City community.
“I have had an overwhelmingly receptive response from the community,” said Bared. “It’s the future — these vehicles are coming. People are really embracing them.”
“I am so thankful for the support of the community,” Bared continued. “It really means a lot to me.”
The H3 neighborhood electric vehicles, available in four- or six-seater models with roof attachments available, are constructed of rust-resistant aluminum and fiberglass. They weigh in at over 1,000 pounds and are available in silver,white, red and yellow.
For more information about the electric vehicles, contact Bared at 954-850-7450 or email [email protected]
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