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Hilo EV enters Asian market to tackle 2-wheeler fatalities with light tech

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British tech startup Hilo EV has partnered with Sacha Engineering to launch its Intelligent Road Illumination System (IRIS) in Indian and South Asian markets.

IRIS uses AI-powered real-time hazard detection and features such as perimeter lighting to react to environmental situations and improve visibility of micromobility vehicles.

Having unveiled IRIS’ first OEM integration in the UK late last year, Hilo’s entrance into the memorandum of understanding with Sacha Engineering marks its first venture into the Asian market.

The current landscape in India regarding 2-wheeler deaths is deeply concerning, with statistics indicating a troubling rise in fatalities,” Hilo Co-Founder James Browne told Zag Daily.

“An integration of technologies like IRIS into vehicles holds immense potential to mitigate this crisis by enhancing rider awareness and reducing the occurrence of accidents on Indian roads.”

A road safety report from India’s Ministry of Road Transport and Highways found that 2-wheeler deaths accounted for 75,000 (44.5%) of India’s road fatalities in 2022, an 8% increase from 2021.

And according to McKinsey, 2-wheelers now compose 70% of India’s 326 million registered vehicles on the road. 

“This alarming trend underscores the urgent need for effective measures to address road safety issues, particularly for vulnerable road users such as 2-wheeler riders.”

James anticipates that the integration of IRIS into India’s densely populated cities will confront unique obstacles.

“Diverse road user behaviours pose some challenges that require consideration. 

“Therefore, ensuring the seamless integration of IRIS involves technological configuration, and cultural and infrastructural considerations to optimise its effectiveness in these densely populated urban environments.”

Hilo will also configure the technology to accommodate for traffic conditions in areas that experience high levels of congestion and varied road infrastructure.

The partnership with Sacha Engineering will entail a technical collaboration as well as facilitate dialogue with potential customers in India, particularly e-scooter manufacturers.

“These conversations have been incredibly encouraging, indicating a shared commitment to enhancing road safety by adopting IRIS technology.”

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