Israel's first electric cars from Better Place are now making their way to a highway near you, and in the Gaza Strip, Palestinians have not been wasting their time. Munzar Kasas, A taxi driver from the Gaza Strip has tired of the ongoing fuel crisis in the strip and has decided that instead of complaining, it was time to act.
He started building an electric battery operated car made of wood and iron. Kasas developed the vehicle on his own without any government financial support and know how. As a proud Palestinian patriot he chose not to use parts from other cars and made sure to emphasize that the car was Palestinian made. As attested by a sticker placed proudly on the car.
The car which was named Munzar for its creator; may not be the height of luxury and it is not likely to win any awards for its innovative design, but it gets the job done. It is white and compact with room for a driver and two passengers who may have to squeeze in a little in the back seat (maximum 150 kilograms).
Instead of a roof, there is a piece of cloth that protects the passengers from the elements. The wheel is similar to the bars on a bicycle and controls the speed an there is no need to pedal.
It would seem that the inspiration for the vehicle comes from the golf courses – it does look a lot like a golf cart – but the Munzar still manages to get along on Gaza's rough roads at a maximum speed of 20 kilometers. And unlike other vehicles, it does not need a drop of petrol or emit pollutants.
Kasas says this is just the first phase of the project and he is now hard at work developing the second generation model which will be based on the Munzar and is a solar powered vehicle. Kasas plans on including doors and a fixed roof on the later model.
Kasas expressed his hope that the cars he manufactures will be able to serve as ambulances which will be fit with first aid and oxygen tanks or as private cars for the benefit of the Strip's residents.
The electric car is not Kasas' only invention. In the past he has developed solutions for people with disabilities or those suffering from paralysis. These include a TV remote control where you use your head or tongue as well as a tool that allows people to control the computer wirelessly through head movement.