Automotive

Lightyear One solar electric vehicle taken for high-speed test drive

Lightyear One solar electric v...
In recent test drives, the Lightyear One validation prototype was driven at 130 km/h, managing energy consumption of 141 Wh/km for a per-charge range of over 400 km
In recent test drives, the Lightyear One validation prototype was driven at 130 km/h, managing energy consumption of 141 Wh/km for a per-charge range of over 400 km
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In recent test drives, the Lightyear One validation prototype was driven at 130 km/h, managing energy consumption of 141 Wh/km for a per-charge range of over 400 km
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In recent test drives, the Lightyear One validation prototype was driven at 130 km/h, managing energy consumption of 141 Wh/km for a per-charge range of over 400 km

Last year, Netherlands solar electric vehicle developer Lightyear took its validation prototype to the track and managed to roll for 710 km on a single charge of its 60-kWh battery. That milestone was achieved at 85 km/h, but more recently the company has undertaken some high-speed testing at a track near Rome.

Back in April 2021, Bridgestone announced that it had engineered tires with low rolling resistance specifically for the Lightyear One solar electric vehicle.

Late last month, the Lightyear team made its way to the Bridgestone Technology & Solutions Centre EMIA in Aprilia, near Rome, to undertake more efficiency testing, and perform aerodynamic evaluations. And as part of this process, the test drivers decided to push the long-range vehicle even further by undertaking high-speed runs.

Though the company is aiming for a top speed of 160 km/h (99.4 mph), test drivers are raising the One's tested speed in stages to make sure all works as it should and safety boxes are checked. As such, the latest outing topped out at 130 km/h (80 mph) with local temperatures around 10 °C (50 °F) and overcast conditions – both of which impact efficiency and performance.

Lightyear One High-speed Testing — Building the Most Efficient Electric Vehicle

Nevertheless, Lightyear reports that the One validation prototype managed to achieve a 141 Wh/km energy consumption figure, which should translate to more than 400 km (248.5 miles) of driving range on a single charge. Info on how much contribution the panels made during these tests hasn't been shared, but test driver Megan Parfitt said "comparing that to other vehicles on the market right now, that's about one and a half times further than a directly-comparable vehicle can do with the same battery size."

Lightyear is aiming for a WLTP per-charge range of 725 km (450 miles) for the production vehicle, with the five square meters of solar panels potentially keeping the One away from chargers for longer. The first vehicles are expected to start rolling off the production line later this year.

Source: Lightyear

5 comments
5 comments
windykites
I read recently, that due to the huge increase in the price of electricity, some drivers are preferring to drive their petrol cars. This is crazy!
BartyLobethal
So at typical Australian rural road speeds of 100 - 110km/hr this is potentially good for 500-600km per charge. I like that. At 50-60km/hr on urban roads and with all those solar panels I imagine it would be a long trip between charges.
Adrian Akau
I spoke to a car salesman about two weeks ago. He said that hybrids are for drivers who put on high milage per year. They are not necessary for those who do not drive much. There should be a study taking into consideration the distance traveled, the cost of fuel and the number of years to pay back the extra cost of a hybrid.
GlenHale
To replace the batteries in a Tesla is about 22K USD assume plus fitting and dumping to old..This battery slow die over the yrs so the most of a charge is a less %.If we all go for EV's houses , streets will need to be rewired..power stations upgraded
ReservoirPup
A truly breakthrough BEV, but the PV part isn’t the main reason it goes that far😉
@GlenHale: you either got your math wrong or have never heard of V2G and how it might balance the grid. A decent number of BEVs in France or Ukraine with proper grid management will mean the end of mercury- spitting power plants.