GENERICO.ruAutoThe Aptera solar car project is alive, preparations are underway for mass production

The Aptera solar car project is alive, preparations are underway for mass production

California startup Aptera Motors has raised the necessary money to release a pilot batch of its unusual three-wheeled solar car. The debut version of the Launch Edition costs $33,200.

Aptera is a long-term project that has outlived its few younger counterparts: last year, the Dutch company Lightyear and the German Sono Motors, which wanted to produce their solar cars, failed. Aptera showed a prototype of its solar car of the same name in 2019, began accepting orders for it in 2020, the final design was presented in January last year, production was supposed to begin at the end of 2023, but did not begin.

We already thought that Aptera Motors had sunk into oblivion, but the other day the company issued a press release saying that everything was fine: with the help of the Accelerator crowdfunding program, it managed to raise $33 million to begin preparing the production of a solar car. Additionally, Aptera Motors received a $21 million grant from the state of California last spring, so the project is moving forward, just not as quickly as its creators would like.

Aptera has already collected about 46,000 orders for its solar car. The Launch Edition version will go into production first, its circulation will be about 5,000 copies, then several modifications will be offered, in the future the company wants to produce 20,000 solar cars per year at eight assembly factories around the world.

The Aptera two-seat body is made from several large molded composite sandwich panels reinforced with carbon-Kevlar. The equipment includes two front airbags, climate control, an audio system (four speakers and a subwoofer), two USB ports, two rear view cameras and two parking sonars. The trunk volume is 920 l, its large loading area can be used as a base for a tent, and there are all the necessary fasteners.

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The motor wheels are placed outside the body and surrounded by their own aerodynamic fairings, while the declared aerodynamic drag coefficient of the solar car is only 0.13. Overall length of Aptera – 4.55 mm, width – 2.23 m, height – 1.4 m, wheelbase – 2.82 m, ground clearance – 13 cm.

In the Launch Edition version, the sunmobile is equipped with a traction battery, the full charge of which is enough for 643 km. The total area of ​​the solar panels implanted into the body is 3 m2, their total power is 700 W, in good sunlight they provide up to 64 km of additional mileage per day, that is, with small daily runs in the state of California, you can never connect the solar car to an outlet at all – This is its main feature. The Aptera accelerates to 60 mph (96.56 km/h) in 4 seconds, with a top speed of 101 mph (162.5 km/h).

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We wish Aptera Motors good luck : the modern world, unfortunately, is not very supportive of startups with non-standard business ideas; at the moment there are simply no alternative living solar mobile projects or we don’t know them.


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