$800 Chinese electric golf cart

After spending a year writing this column about Alibaba’s Incredibly Weird Electric Vehicle of the Week, I’ve had the opportunity to experience all sorts of unique Chinese design themes. I like to see how they tackle the same transportation issues we have out West, but often come up with their own unique solutions. And this week’s quirky little electric golf cart is a great example of just how awesome this design can be.

Just like with many golf carts, it seems our version of Alibaba here is more geared towards driving through a local community than ferrying bankers and CEOs around this gigantic waste of water and space they call it a golf resort.

This small four-wheeler is a narrow vehicle and therefore it doesn’t really have a lot of extra interior space. It can accommodate two adults seated in tandem, or perhaps four if they are really petite.

Where you would traditionally find a steering wheel, the designers seem to have decided that a pair of handlebars would be more appropriate.

I’m not sure I’m following the logic, but as the eurhythmics have said, who am I to disagree?

The small platform is equipped with everything you need to navigate your neighborhood. There are side mirrors, electronic horn, full lighting package with turn signals, low gear for climbing, parking brake and suspension. There’s even a 1000W motor, which translates to a total output of 1.3 horsepower. It is many power, people!

Okay, it’s not particularly powerful, perhaps that’s why the little roadster only reaches a top speed of 30 km/h (18 mph). But consider that the wheel track seems barely wider than a plate, so maybe a slower gear is the way to go. I’m not sure how well this thing can handle a hairpin bend, let alone a sand trap.

One of the most striking design decisions is that massively raked windshield. Not only does this help improve aerodynamics (which of course is essential at these high speeds), but it also serves to protect the front bike basket from rain and keep your valuables dry – an important consideration in a vehicle without doors or windows. .

“Why is there even a bicycle basket?” you might be wondering. Of course, it’s an odd design choice. But I imagine that once you start using a bike basket golf cart for a few days, you’ll soon be wondering “Why don’t ALL golf carts come with bike baskets?”

If that front basket doesn’t offer enough storage for you, then check this out. I saved the coolest design feature for last.

See that back seat behind the driver? It hides a clever trick. He spends most of his time as an unassuming shoal, just hanging out and waiting for cigarette butts. But when duty calls him, he takes action for a completely different purpose.

The entire seat structure is hinged and tilts forward, revealing a cargo bed in its place. How cool is that?!

Check out how well it works in the video below.

Of course, that leaves me with so many questions. What was in that giant box with a hatch cut out of the bottom? Why did he just leave it on the side of the road? Did he know this guy who was passing by at the exact moment and jumped in, or was it just a happy accident? What are the chances of this video being staged? Who can I still trust? Do pets also have names for us?

The world is a confusing place.

But I have a feeling the whole thing would be a little less confusing when seen speeding through the plastic windshield of a Chinese electric golf cart at 30 km/h.

And luckily for us, it’s not an unobtainable electric car with dealerships slashing prices right and left. It’s actually surprisingly affordable at only $818!

True, this price does not include 60V batteries. Or the shipping to get it to your driveway halfway around the world. or import taxes and duties. But what’s that, like $20 more?

Or maybe several times more than the price of the whole vehicle, as I found out when I bought my own electric mini-van in China last year.

But at least with that low price, there’s room to add extra costs and still be well below the $7-10,000 that companies charge in the US for electric golf carts.

And I can assure you that you will have the most unique vehicle in the entire Del Boca Vista retirement community!

A quick note on not listening to me

Regular readers of this column will know that these pieces are largely written in jest and exist primarily for us to explore the quirky and fun quirks found in the electric vehicle section of China’s largest online shopping network.

I am not suggesting anyone to go and buy anything from Alibaba. Although I’ve personally done it a few times, shopping on these types of networks can be risky because it’s often hard to make sure you’re getting what you think you’re getting, not to mention all the surprising hidden fees along the way. path.

While several people have purchased some of the goofy vehicles I’ve featured here before, buying something silly on Alibaba is for the brave or the dense – not the faint-hearted.

Unless you’re willing to bet on something like that, maybe you’re just window shopping while you let unskilled semi-professionals like me do the dirty work of harvesting and sometimes buy these funny little EV finds.

And if that wasn’t enough for you, check out some of my other favorite Awesomely Weird Alibaba EVs of the Week below:

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