A low-speed electric vehicle that looks similar to a golf cart is making its rounds in the Kootenays.

It’s a cost-effective option for members of the Kootenay Car Share Co-operative who need to get around Nelson. There are a total of 16 vehicles in the fleet.

It only reaches a maximum speed of 40 km/h and can’t be used on roads with speed limits greater than 50 km/h.

“It handles more like a golf cart than a car. It is peppy and fun to drive,” executive director Colleen Doyle said in an online exchange.

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Similar to most parts of Canada, snowy conditions can result in tedious driving in Nelson. To make sure the new electric vehicle can handle the toughest weather, Kootenay Car Share added lift kits and extended the wheel base to improve.

“We are still waiting for winter tires and a good snowfall to really put it to the test,” Doyle said.

The electric vehicles can be charged anywhere there is a standard outlet.

“This vehicle is great for all in town trips,” she said.

“Initially we were looking at seniors and tourists to be our target market as there is amazing visibility and the low speed lets you take in your surroundings.”

The vehicle was manufactured in Vernon at SC Carts, and the co-op purchased it with help through grants from Columbia Basin Trust and City of Nelson.

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