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Hybrid m-bikes to revolutionise industry [10-02-2011]  
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Revolution Manufacturing Sdn Bhd expects to revolutionise the local motorcycle industry with the country's first hybrid motorcycles.

The company yesterday unveiled two hybrid models called GW 800HB and GW 500HB, which will be made available to the public next month.

Essentially a scooter, the 80cc GW 800HB will have a price tag of RM8,000, while the smaller 50cc GW 500HB will cost around RM7,000.

The motorcycles' hybrid drive-system combines a conventional internal combustion engine with an electric propulsion system.

Senior company executives said the hybrid motorcycles are a "successful collaboration of local engineers and researchers" over the past four years.

Revolution Manufacturing chairman Datuk Dr Mohd Yahya Nordin said the company had spent some RM6 million to develop the "green" motorcycles.

Revolution Manufacturing and its marketing arm Serunai Emas Sdn Bhd expect to sell 16,000 units of the vehicles this year. This should translate into a 2 per cent share of the total motorcycle sales volume.

For 2012, the companies aims to grab a bigger market share of 3 to 3.5 per cent.

Serunai Emas chief executive officer Aubrey Insley O'Hara said the motorcycles will also be exported to countries in the region as well as South Africa and Eastern Europe.

The initial export focus, however, will be Indonesia, Bangladesh and Vietnam.

"We are in talks with the local parties there," O'Hara said during the motorcycles' media preview and test ride in Dengkil, Selangor, yesterday.

He added that the company plans to set up its maiden overseas plant in Bangladesh.

The hybrid motorcycles are produced by Hybrid Scooters Sdn Bhd, another subsidiary of Revolution Manufacturing, at its factory in Dengkil.

Hybrid Scooters has the exclusive manufacturing licence for hybrid motorcycles from the Ministry of International Trade and Industry.

Company executives said the GW 800HB is capable of travelling 220km on a full tank of fuel and a fully-charged battery.

"This makes it a practical mode of transportation for long-distance travel as well as short hops, where the user may opt for the use of only the electrical motor," Mohd Yahya said.

O'Hara, meanwhile, said: "One of the hybrid motorcycle's most distinctive advantages over a full-electric motorcycle is that the former is not completely dependent on battery power.

"This is the major contributing factor to the unpopularity of full-electric motorcycles in the market today."

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