Tuk-Tuks in the UK
After the last article somebody messaged us and asked what Tuk-Tuks have to do with Brits in the Philippines, The answer is firstly the sudden popularity of Tuk Tuks in the UK seems to coincide with the popularity of Tuk-Tuks in the Philippines. The second reason is there are a few Brits that have Tuk Tuks in the Philippines and many more are thinking about getting one.
There are several companies importing Tuk Tuk the Bajaj RE, TVS King and the Piaggio Ape and adapting them so they meet the strict regulations in the UK.
In the UK the Bajaj RE is road legal on all roads with no restriction this even includes Motorways that are equivalent to expressways in the Philippines but with higher speed limits.
In Brighton, Southampton Liverpool, London, Worcestershire, Yorkshire and Hampshire you can see Tuk Tuks being used as taxis or offering tours around the cities or the countryside, the latest city likely to have Tuk Tuks is Cardiff, Cardiff Tuk Tuk Tours having applied for permission to use Tuk Tuks to offer tours of Cardiff. There are also plans to introduce Tuk Tuks to Edinburgh and Birmingham. Tuk Tuks are also being used in many for tours in many major cities in Europe
Many British are falling in love with the Tuk Tuk after holidaying in Sri Lanka and then arranging to have one shipped to the UK, the best known of these is a lady that calls herself Tuk Tuk Kella, She customised her Tuk Tuk in a classic Sri Lankan style before she returned to the UK with her Tuk Tuk, it can now be seen at some classic car shows she is also available for weddings
Tuk Tuks are also being used by companies to promote their business because they are so eye-catching as they drive past heads turn to look.
The famous British singer Sophie Ellis-Bextor and her husband Richard Jones who is The Feeling bassist also have a Tuk Tuk or at least they did until thieves stole it in April this year, not sure if it got recovered.
A Tuk Tuk in the UK will set you back £4987 plus VAT so far cheaper than a car. Or you can hire one for £250 we presume that is with a driver.
The Tuk Tuk might not be well suited to the British winter as it has no heater, but it has to be better than a motorbike as at least it has a roof. In summer there is no doubt that an auto rickshaw is a fun ride and a great way to see the sights.
Driving an auto rickshaw can take a bit of getting used to because of the twist grip gear change, however, if you are an old mod or a scooter boy who have ridden a Lambretta or Vespa it will come naturally to you as it has much the same feel as a scooter.
Don’t worry about it just having 3 wheels, the engine is in the rear of a Tuk Tuk so keep it far more stable than the Reliants like Del Boy drove in “Only Fools and Horses” which were renown for tipping over. The reason they were so unstable was the engine was in the front that would throw them off balance in corners.
If you corner hard in a Tuk Tuk you will lift a wheel off the road but you have to lift them a long way before it goes past the point of balance.
Where you can Hire a Tuk Tuk in the UK
We can recommend Tuk Tuk Time Pembrokeshire in Southwest Wales, they offer Tuk Tuk Tours, Tuk Tuk Wedding Cars, and will supply Tuk-Tuks for events.
TVS King in the UK
To our knowledge, there are about 12 TVS King in the UK, none of the owners we have spoken to know how they got there, we do know at least one was sent there by TVS to take a European emission standards test.
If anyone would is interested in importing the TVS King to the UK please contact us
What thee TVS can give you is extra acceleration, better hill climbing, easier reversing, built-in crumple zone, a stronger body and you will be dealing with a British ex-pat so no problem with language.