Sri Lankan Entrepreneur Builds His Own EV At His Folks’ Place

The world, so it seems, is teeming with inventors creating their own versions of electric vehicles (EVs) right now.

In the last few weeks we’ve reported on an all-electric conversion of a sixties vintage car by a Florida man and an inventor in China who incorporated fans into his home-built EV.

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image via Nilanga Senevirathne

The latest entrepreneur to make his own electric car is Nilanga Senevirathne, a 26-year-old Sri Lankan.

The young inventor has called his creation Elca and says the 4-door vehicle is sourced from 60 per cent local materials.

Senevirathne told the Sri Lankan paper The Sunday Times that he had received interest from 18 countries around the world and that he had already earmarked a 5,000-square-foot factory to go in production with the vehicle.

Senevirathne, who lives with his parents in the town of Kalubowila, returned to Sri Lanka after studying robotics at Swinburne University, Malaysia. However, it was after a spell at Coventry University in the U.K. that he developed the idea to build his own EV.

According to the paper, within a year of returning to Sri Lanka, he had completed the blueprints, project analysis, and feasibility reports for the car and had a set of drawings for his unique creation.

Senevirathne also claimed to the paper that the car was unique because it has turbo boosters to power it uphill.

However, you might want to take some of the precocious entrepreneur’s claims with a pinch of salt since he also told the paper he reckoned on building 20 cars a month with a staff of just 20.

In China, Tang Zhenping created his own EV from scratch, incorporating a fan into the design. The 55-year-old from the village of Banjiehe, in the Tongzhou district of Beijing told the China Daily newspaper he had wanted to create a car since high school.

Paul Willis has been journalist for a decade. Starting out in Northern England, from where he hails, he worked as a reporter on regional papers before graduating to the cut-throat world of London print media. On the way he spent a year as a correspondent in East Africa, writing about election fraud, drought and an Ethiopian version of American Idol. Since moving to America three years ago he has worked as a freelancer, working for CNN.com and major newspapers in Britain, Australia and North America. He writes on subjects as diverse as travel, media ethics and human evolution. He lives in New York where, in spite of the car fumes and the sometimes eccentric driving habits of the yellow cabs, he rides his bike everywhere.