AbstractA group of Swiss designers & engineers, in cooperation with a Polish engineering company, has developed a three wheel electric vehicle for the urban commuter. The vehicle has an autonomy range of 80–100km and a top speed of 90km/h. The zero emission vehicle is fully powered by electricity. The battery is based on the latest lithium polymer technology. Partners for local distribution, coping with the technology, service and maintenance, are sought.
In 1998 a team of specialists in Switzerland started to develop a radically new electric vehicle with the main criteria 1) fun to drive and 2) affordable to everybody, therefore capable to become a relevant factor in solving the growing problems of pollution in big cities. The main focus was sustainable automotive mobility. A company was founded which produced the first 80 test vehicles in 2001. Owing to depressed financial markets in 2002 and in spite of promising marketing tests the company was unable to finance the next steps towards industrial production.
In 2005, the licence rights were transferred to a group of private investors who proceeded to a thorough re-engineering of essential parts of the vehicle and developed a state of the art battery management system. The results of these efforts are now assets of the new company in Switzerland, founded in 2007.
Three wheel lightweight electric vehicle (EV) for the average citizen
The 3-wheel vehicle comprises roughly one tenth of the parts of a regular car. Having the EV with 3 wheels allows the company to build a light-weight vehicle at lower cost. The world wide patented construction of the EV is based on a metallic beam, which bears the battery and other electric components. This “car frame” is connected to the electric motor (11.6kW) and the arm with the rear wheel.
The battery - key technology
The batterypack comprises 36 Lithium-Ion cells at 3.7 volt, 53Ah which represents an energy capacity of 7 KWh. The cells are controlled by a patented battery management system. The cells can be pre-heated as well as cooled in order to keep a comfortable environment and increase lifetime and range. The cells were optimized and tested in cooperation with a leading Asian battery manufacturer. The supply of the cells is assured by joint capacity and investment planning. The assembly of the battery is done in Europe.
- Light weighted (550kg), worldwide patented car architecture.
- Fancy and stylish design
- Maximum speed of 90km/h or 56mph (electronically regulated)
- Range of 80-100km on one battery load with a Li-Ion batterypack (65kg) based on the latest battery and drive train technology
- Low energy consumption
- More than 90% of the used materials can be recycled by recycling companies (Cradle to Cradle principle (C2C)
- Outstanding Life Cycle Analysis (LCA)
- Meets a growing demand for sustainable transportation
- Very reasonable pricing compared to available electric vehicles (initial costs and operating costs)
- Homologated for all roads (Europe). Passed all safety tests for its class
- 2nd generation with technology improvements (Market experiences since 2002)