The auto rickshaw, called tuk-tuk or sam-lor meaning three-wheeler in Thailand, is a widely used form of urban transport in Bangkok and other Thai cities. It is particularly popular where traffic congestion is a major problem, such as in Bangkok and Nakhon Ratchasima. The name is onomatopoeic, mimicking the sound of a small (often two-cycle) engine. An equivalent English term would be "putt-putt."
Bangkok and other cities in Thailand have many tuk-tuks which are a more open variation on the India auto-rickshaw. There are no meters, and trip costs are negotiated in advance. Bangkok fares have risen to nearly equal normal taxis due to uninformed foreigners willing to pay the asking price, but leaves passengers more exposed to environmental pollution than taxis. The solid roof is so low that the tuk-tuk is a difficult touring vehicle. Today few locals take one unless they are burdened with packages.
The Thai tuk tuk is starting to change from the old smoke-spewing vehicle of yesteryear. Many Thai Tuk Tuk companies now produce low emission vehicles, and even old ones are having new engines fitted along with LPG conversions. In an early morning of Bangkok, these same passenger vehicles can be seen busily transporting fresh produce around the city. The new tuk tuks also have wet weather sides to keep passengers and drivers dry.
The Thai auto-rikshaw manufacturers are, Monika Motors Ltd., TukTuk (Thailand) Co., Ltd., TukTuk Forwerder Co., Ltd.Bangkok and MMW Tuk-Tuks Co.,Ltd. in Hua Hin. Smaller manufacturers are the Chinnaraje Co., Ltd. in Chiang Mai and the Expertise Co., Ltd. in Chonburi which is manufacturing its models in Komaki, Japan, also.
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electric rickshaw auto