As long as you’ve got the budget, there’s never been a wider range of options for getting mobile. From the utterly conventional closed box with four wheels to the rather unconventional wind-in-your face choices shown here, you can own the road. Even if your usual wheels of choice are attached to a chair. What’s more, these designs are both powered by electricity.
Nissan’s Leaf and the Tesla sports car have shown that electric cars don’t have to look like a milk float or a golf cart. On the other hand, there is merit in a vehicle that’s stripped of all unnecessary frills and styled much like… a golf cart.
But there’s one big difference: these are street legal.
The new models from Melex are just the thing for leisure, estates, agriculture, hospitality, industry, impaired mobility, university campuses and security. Even, says Stuart Elliot of Melex, for eco-friendly commuting.
Their new street legal models, available in two- or four-seater configuration, have been through SABS homologation and will be registered as L3 light passenger vehicles. Top speed from the 48 V/5 kW motor is a bracing 50 km/h and range is a very useful 100 km if fitted with the optional solar panel.
In addition to these units, Melex is also homologating a 14-seat bus that’s been snapped up by a casino. Find out more at
Scooti Freedom Cruiser
Those confined to a wheelchair usually depend on a helper or on specially adapted vehicles to get around. The Scooti Freedom Cruiser provides an alternative that, besides being convenient, suggests that travel could be fun, too. A ramp allows easy access to the Freedom Cruiser’s “load box”. Once in position, the driver simply powers off. You need never leave your chair, in fact.
According to the local distributors, the Cruiser will be ENATIS approved and street legal (though it won’t be allowed on expressways).
The Cruiser is able to load up to 150 kg. The tricycle layout uses 16-inch alloy wheels with nylon/rubber compound tyres, drum brakes and a parking brake. The 48 V motor sends 800 W to the rear wheels (forward or reverse is selectable) and is able to propel the Cruiser to a top speed of 35 km/h. Range is between 55 and 65 km, with a charge time of 6-8 hours at 220 V. It should be quite nippy, too: turning circle is 3,8 metres.
Price: R43 995, including free delivery in SA. To find out more, see scooti.co.za/