Streetcars are classy. There's an entire romanticism that goes along with memories of these city people movers. In most of America, of course, GM helped put an end to streetcars. But, if you're a fan of trams, take a glimpse at the future of streetcars. Naturally, it's available in Japan.

A place called the Railway Technical Research Institute in Kokubunji, Tokyo, has announced the development of a lithium-ion powered tram with a battery that can be recharged in under a minute. The batteries will get a serious test when they start being used in Sapporo at the end of next month (let me tell you, it gets cold in Sapporo in the winter). The tram can do 40 kph for 15 clicks and about 70 percent of the energy used to decelerate is sent back to the battery. Even with all that, these trams still only use about 10 percent less energy than existing streetcars, says Far East Gizmos quoting the RTRI.

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[Source: Far East Gizmos via NewLaunches, h/t to Ray]

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