What if you could remove the battery from an electric car and carry it inside to recharge?
One of the reasons electric bicycles make so much sense is that, unlike electric cars, they don’t rely on widespread charging infrastructure; e-bikes have removable batteries that can be replenished via a household socket.
Most electric cars have batteries that are too heavy to remove in this way, but not the tiny Biro. Categorised as a quadricycle, it’s the only 4-wheeled EV with a removable lithium battery.
Once fully charged after 2-4 hours, the Biro has a range of 55 km.
The changing face (and size) of electric cars
There was a time when learning to drive and buying a car was a rite of passage. However, e-scooters, e-bike share schemes, Uber and soaring insurance costs are slowly putting paid to that.
The Biro joins a number of tiny electric cars hoping to redefine urban driving with vehicles that are smaller, cleaner and safer; cheap and cheerful motorised transport that’s far better suited to congested towns and cities than SUVs.
For example, Fiat has added a dash of flair to the microcar market with the launch of the pint-sized electric Topolino; a worthy successor to the original Fiat 500. With a top speed of 27mph, what better car for travel within the UK’s expanding 20mph zones?
Bigger isn’t better; 20mph limits and the rise of the microcar
There’s a perception that large, heavy cars such as 4X4s or SUVs are safe, but they pose an increased risk to pedestrians in the event of a collision. Quadricycles on the other hand are designed to operate in urban areas at low speeds.
The fact these micro cars are lighter than conventional vehicles makes them less of a risk to pedestrians and less damaging to the road surface. In fact, in areas where people live and work, there’s a strong argument that anything heavier and faster than a quadricycle poses an unacceptable risk.
With the spread of 20mph zones, perhaps the microcar is about to enter its golden age. After all, these are vehicles designed to operate at lower speeds. Microcars could be just the thing for drivers who struggle to maintain 20mph.
The ethical choice
The ETA was established in 1990 as an ethical provider of green, reliable travel services. Over 30 years on, we continue to offer cycle insurance , breakdown cover and mobility scooter insurance while putting concern for the environment at the heart of all we do.
The Good Shopping Guide judges us to be the UK’s most ethical provider.