Two cars, one bike to hit streets Friday
The announcement comes just a few days ahead of the legalisation of certain electric cars for use on all three Islands’ roads when the regulations of the new Traffic Law take effect on Friday.
Mr. Bush said he would ask Cabinet members for a further reduction in import duties for the vehicles, but couldn’t promise anything further immediately. The initial duty reduction means a 32 per cent levy charged on the import of an electric vehicle would drop to 22 per cent.
“We do lose some revenue….but while that happens we gain an improvement to our environment,” Mr. Bush said during a Tuesday press conference.
The Premier was joined Tuesday afternoon by Cayman Automotive CEO John Felder. Mr. Felder has been trying to bring electric vehicles into the country for going on seven years and with the implementation of the Traffic Law Friday will finally see his first road-ready electrics be registered for use.
Mr. Felder said plans were in the works for a network of 14 electric car charging stations with the first four going in at Camana Bay, the Cayman Motor Museum in West Bay, Governors Square and at Kaibo in North Side.
The Cayman Automotive CEO also said the first electric cars in the Caribbean to be available for tourist rentals would be announced in Cayman Brac on Friday.
“It’s important for all the Caribbean,” Mr. Felder said. “This will become the model; there is no one else in the Caribbean doing what you see here today.”
What visitors to the government administration building saw Tuesday were three fully electric powered vehicles that will be transferred to their owners upon being registered Friday. Those included a ‘Think City’ electric car sold to local businessman Joey Hew, a ‘Wheego Electric’ car sold to former Chamber of Commerce President Jim O’Neill and a ‘Zero’ electric motorcycle sold to Shaun Whittaker.
Mr. Whittaker gave a demonstration of his new bike Tuesday afternoon. On-lookers couldn’t tell when he started up the electric bike because it operates in complete silence.
Mr. Felder said he had four other electric cars being shipped in now that had already sold.
“The future is here, and the Cayman Islands are a part of it,” Mr. Bush said.