A Filipino-made amphibious tricycle was introduced to the market last week in answer to the needs of thousands Filipino residents living in perennially flooded areas as well as low-lying communities near bodies of water. The floating trike, fittingly called the “Salamander” was launched by H2O Technologies recently at the Capitol Commons Center in Pasig City.
The Salamander, which is the brainchild of Filipino custom car ‘Sifu’ or master, Atoy Llave of A-Toy Body Kits, came into fruition after he shared his ideas with the well-known boat maker Dominic Chung. After the exchange of ideas, a partnership between Llave and Chung was formed and H2O Technologies was formed.
Leading the engineering team at H2O Technologies is Lamberto Armada who fused the ideas and knowhow of both Llave and Chung–creating the Salamander.
The Salamander is an amphibious tricycle which can carry six passengers, including the driver, that can drive over land and water, directly.
The tricycle is built on a compartmentalized, double-hull, fiberglass body that would not sink even if a section sustains damage.
Two prototypes were introduced during the launch, with one being powered by a 250cc gasoline-fed engine, while the other, a five kilowatt electric motor. On the road, the gas-powered model transmits its power to the pavement via the two rear wheels. When on water, the Salamander is propelled by a three-bladed propeller that is directly connected to the engine. Propulsion for the electric variant is done also through its rear wheels, when on land, and through an impeller, when in water. Steering is done via the front wheels, or through the rudder and the impeller located at the rear.
According to Llave, the cost of the Salamaders would be between PhP 200,000 to PhP230,000 each. He however added that the cost will come down once they find a financier to mass produce the ingenious vehicles.