Business & Economy

Engineer hopes to revolutionize transport in Nicaragua with $3,000 car

By Renee Lucia Ramos

Jinotega, Nicaragua, Oct 26 (EFE).- With an investment of just $3,000, a 27-year-old Nicaraguan engineer has put together a car that can haul as much as a small pickup truck but rivals a motorcycle in terms of fuel economy.

Building the vehicle was the fulfillment of a childhood dream, Andres Acersio Herrera Pineda told Efe in this city north of Managua.

The AR PINHER consists of a fiberglass body atop a chassis made of metal tubes, equipped with four-wheel drive and a 400cc gasoline-powered engine capable of a top speed of 60 km/h (37.28 mph).

The car rolls on regular automobile tires and uses hydraulic brakes.

And though the AR PINHER began as a passion project, Herrera Pineda is hopeful of finding someone with the resources and interest to help him shift from assembling a single vehicle in his garage to mass producing a low-cost transportation option in Nicaragua, one of the poorest nations in the Western Hemisphere.

He said that his aim was to build a “vehicle with sufficient efficiency, strength, power, with low (fuel) consumption and that was super-safe when it comes to traveling on the highway.”

“Before making this car, I had to make other machines, I had to make a mechanical lathe. The majority of the parts in this car are made by me,” Herrera Pineda said.

The engineer also had to use his knowledge to calculate the resistance of the materials to ensure that the vehicle could carry passengers and cargo, before devising from scratch the procedure and “logistics to be able to build it.”

Starting work on May 1, 2016, Herrera Pineda completed the AR PINHER on Jan. 25, 2019, a span of nearly three years, and making a transition to mass production would require capital.

“One has projects ready, but the people to sponsor them or make them reality do not exist,” he said with a tone of regret. EFE rlr/dr

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