UPM launches ultra-compact electric vehicle

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BY AZMAN ZAKARIA

SERDANG:  Universiti Putra Malaysia (UPM) through its Faculty of Engineering has embarked on an innovative transportation system using electric vehicles, MyCOMS, the first of its kind in Malaysia, for use by staff and students in its ongoing efforts to promote green technology in its campus.

The project was realised through the sponsorship of three electric vehicles – Toyota, Chotto Odekake Machimade Suisui (COMS) that means ‘smooth, short rides into town’ by Toyota Auto Body Japan. COMS is a single-seater ultra-compact electric vehicle.

The system will further improve the university’s existing transportation system to be more environmental-friendly.

A car monitoring system has been developed that allows users to book the vehicle online and enable monitoring of the movement and location of MyCOMS vehicles.      The project marked joint collab-orations between UPM, Toyota Auto Body Malaysia (TABM), Toyota Auto Body Japan (TABJ) and Kyushu Institute of Technology (Kyutech), Japan.

UPM Vice-Chancellor, Prof Datin Paduka Dr Aini Ideris said MyCOMS was an initiative taken to further support and strengthen UPM’s green campus aspiration by reduc-ing carbon emission in the campus and providing environmental-friendly transportation.

“UPM is very much honored to have received the three electric COMS vehicles from TABJ and TABM. These vehicles are highly valued by us as Toyota COMS is the first electric vehicle in Malaysia, and Toyota COMS has taken our potentials as ‘green university’ to another level,” she said when launching the MyCOMS project here.

She added that the project had come a long way since its conception in 2015 and would be a catalyst for UPM researchers to conduct research in developing electric cars, all by themselves.

She also said that UPM researchers specialising in various fields, including electrical and electronic engineering, computers, communication, mechanical and information technology, would take part in the process design, system development and operation testing to ensure the success of the project.

“Due to its small size, it will reduce the size of parking space while with its electric functionality, carbon emission can be reduced and energy consumption be saved.     “A monitoring system named ‘MyCOMS apps’ software application has been developed for android and web-based users where users can use this application to book the MyCOMS electric vehicle online,” she said.

Meanwhile, Toyota Automotive Body Japan managing director, Masaki Fukada said the use of COMS in Japan was spreading widely, expressing hope that UPM would be a based model for the growth of ultra-compact electric vehicles and transportation systems for cities in Malaysia.– UPM