by Dilanthi Jayamanne
Pictures by Jude Denzil Pathiraja
The first word that came to mind when I saw the Micro for the first time was "cool". This is the kind of automobile I would like to have. The car reminded me of the love bug, because it had a warm and cosy appearance. Its the new automobile in town. But mind you, it has not been imported but been manufactured in our very own Sri Lanka.
"It will be something the nation deserves," the Chairman of Micro Cars Private Limited, Dr. Lawrence Perera said when I met him. "People cannot afford to maintain a car nowadays even if they buy one. And that too only a certain class can afford. But the Micro; a name which fits the quaint appearance of the car is well within the reach any middle class family."
"The Micro brings mobility to the masses. Its clever yet affordable, minimalistic yet stylish. More than all these things it is a true family car designed for a small family. "The most affordable vehicle for most people seems to be the motor cycle. But we want to change that and make sure that this car is within the reach of the masses. We have set the price around Rs. 300,000," Dr Perera said.
The car which has taken three years and three months to be completed is sturdy enough to travel on any terrain. "But basically it has been designed as a town car."
The Micro is an aerodynamically designed ultra - light car with a European engine and gear box. Except for the engine and gear box the entire car has been designed and to manufactured here. The body which has a turbular roller cage gives the occupants inside it complete crash protection.
The brains behind the creation of Sri Lankas very own car, Chairman of Micro Cars Private Limited, Dr. Lawrence Perera.
The rear view of the car which brings mobility to the masses. Its clever yet affordable, minimalistic yet stylish. (Top)
The Micro is environment friendly with a duel fuel gasoline or LPG 4 - stroke engine which is suitable for unleaded fuel. Most importantly it offers excellent fuel economy.
The commercial production for the local market is scheduled to commence within the next few months.
Speaking about the badge of the nippy little car which can travel at a speed of 65 km/h, Dr. Perera said that he had taken a the head of the lion with the Sri Lankan flag in mind to give a contemporary, dynamic appearance to mark the beginning of a new future.
The Micro does 22km per litre of petrol.
The car will first be introduced without an air conditioning system but with the second and the third phase of manufacturing air conditioning and power steering will be introduced.
"The Labour Minister promised us a 50 acre land to carry out the enterprise of manufacturing the car. It would be an eye opener to manufacturers by opening possibilities to export from Sri Lanka especially due to the countrys closeness to all the major shipping routes in the region. The project will also encourage local industry into component manufacturing to support the automobile trade.
"The ar has already had offer from foreign buyers who could not believe that it had been manufactured in Sri Lanka," Dr. Perera added proudly.
The Company behind this enterprise is Transmec Group of Companies. The Manufacturer is Micro Cars Limited.
|NEWS | FEATURES | OPINION | BUSINESS | EDITORIAL | CARTOON | SPORTS|