The U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission in cooperation with E-Z-GO today announced a voluntary recall of nearly 22,000 vehicles which were sold in the first half of 2011 under a number of brands including TXT golf cars, Cushman shuttle vehicles and Bad Boy off-road utility vehicles. The cause is a defective rack rod ball joint in which “…the threaded end of the rack rod ball joint can break and the ball joint can become displaced, causing the driver to lose steering control.” According to the CPSC consumers should stop using recalled products immediately unless otherwise instructed and contact E-Z-GO or an authorized dealer for a free repair. E-Z-GO and E-Z-GO dealers are contacting known owners. E-Z-GO can be contacted at (800) 774-3946 or visit www.ezgo.com. For specific vehicle models and serial numbers involved in the recall visit the CPSC website. Learn more: CPSC.gov
Today the New York Times published a front page story on side-by-sides, focusing mainly on their safety. The title, “An A.T.V. With Extra Room, and Maybe More Risks, Too“, is a little misleading given that the statistics they present in the story imply that they are less dangerous than ATVs. The story also covers the decline of ATVs, some of the factors driving consumers to switch to side-by-sides and the current efforts by federal regulators to create new mandatory safety standards. These standards may push vehicles to be wider and lower which could negatively effect their trail-riding ability. Learn more: NYTimes.com
Viridian Motors of Virginia expects to enter the small, electric utility truck market early next year. Similar in design to a mini-truck, the Work Ready truck comes in two models, the WR100 and WR200, has a top speed of 25 mph and is priced at $13,500. Target markets include farms, golf courses and apartment complexes. The vehicle is a mix of US and China sourced parts with the assembly being performed in Norfolk, VA.
According to the company president Terry Langhorne the chassis and cabin are made in China and Chinese sourced parts constitute 15-20% of the sales price. Parts sourced from the US include electric AC motor, controller, contactor, wiring harness, seats, transaxle rear end, fuse links, tires, brake lines, interior sheet metal components, steel chassis modifications, 12v battery system, throttle plates, gauges and dashboard switch assemblies. Learn more: Hamptonroads.com
Motorcycle-USA.com recently took a look at the 2012 Teryx4 which targets the recreational market. As the name would suggest the UTV seats four and it comes in three versions.
The base model ($13,399) has black doors and no electronic power steering. A mid-level EPS model ($14,399) adds upgraded suspension, two-tone seats, matching colors for doors and body panels, A-pillar covers and over fenders. Kawasaki also builds a luxury model for buyers looking for top-end components. The Teryx4 LE ($15,199) comes in special colors with the same benefits of the EPS models as well as a plastic roof and cast aluminum wheels.
Other features include in a 749cc V-twin engine with 85 x 66mm bore and stroke cylinders with a 9.3:1 compression ratio, larger air filter and radiator, CVT transmission with centrifugal clutch, an engine braking feature, a new chassis (compared to the Teryx 2 seaters) and electronic power steering. The Motorcycle-USA editors gave it a favorable review.
Overall the Teryx4 is a great side-by-side. Kawasaki already impressed us with the standard Teryx, but we actually prefer the ride quality of the Teryx4 all around. Unlike a RZR 4, which is completely different from a Polaris two-seater, the Teryx4 doesn’t give up much to its little brother. With such good handling it more than makes up for any weakness with added stability and comfort. Adding an improved user interface, beefier engine, EPS, quieter ride and the ability to carry two extra people easily makes this our favorite Kawasaki RUV.
Garia has developed a special edition golf car, the Garia Mansory Edition. The vehicle is a collaboration between Garia and Mansory, a high-end customizer of cars from luxury brands such as Rolls Royce, Austin Martina and Bentley.
Carbon fiber – an ultra-light yet exceptionally strong material normally used in the motor sports and aircraft industries – has been used on body panels on the front, side steps and tail. The cabin floor is lined with teak tree, while the specially designed headlights, air scoop and fender gills complete this unique and complex transformation.
The Garia Mansory Edition comes in street legal and non-street legal versions and will be on display at the Top Marques Macau 2011 which takes place from November 24-27 2011 at The Venetian Macau.
In other Garia developments, the company has partnered with Hank Haney a leading golf instructor for a number of professional golfers and host of “The Haney Project.” on the Golf Channel.
After several years of legal battles and legislative efforts Electric Cab of Austin will soon be able to operate legally in downtown Austin. The City Council recently approved the first writing of an ordinance that will allow electric LSVs to be used in the downtown area. Rides are provided for free and the company generates revenue from advertising on the vehicles. Learn more: Dailytexanonline.com
Comment: This business model of using LSVs for center city taxi services has emerged in a number of cities. Given the number of cities that could potentially implement a service such as this, it represents a potential growth area for LSVs that was not apparent several years ago. The concept is another example of how STOVs can perform well in specific applications. In this case regular taxis are too expensive for such short trips and electric LSVs provide a greener alternative while taking up less space on the road.
The original Fargo, ND GEM factory will be liquidated starting December 6th. After acquiring GEM, Polaris Industries moved GEM production to their plant in Spirit Lake, IA. Items available for sale include “…excess Global Electric Motorcars vehicles, tools, equipment, office furniture, pallet racking, and a state of the art production line installed in 2003.” Liquid Asset Partners will be conducting the liquidation. Learn more: PRWeb.com