Solar Buggy on its way to Nevada ahead of 2025 city microEV production
Dutch micromobility startup Squad Mobility is gearing up for the 2025 production launch of its Solar City microEV with a visit to Las Vegas next month for CES 2024, where the company will also show off a special edition Buggy version.
Squad Mobility was founded in Amsterdam in 2019 by Robert Hoevers and Chris Klok – who had both previously worked on the Lightyear One four-door solar-electric vehicle – to work on a much smaller and much cheaper way to cleanly get around town.
Renders turned to reality with the official debut of the Squad Solar two-seater last year, which was pitched at a supremely affordable €6,250, or €9,300 for a Signature Edition.
Those figures have remained true for the current pre-order phase, with the first hundred Europe-exclusive vehicles off the production line commanding that Signature Edition price tag and coming with four batteries for a per-charge range of 100 km (62 miles).
There's now a Pioneer Edition for the following 900 models, at €7,050, but they will roll with two batteries for around half the range. There's also a regular production pre-order level, plus another for folks outside of the EU – with availability in the US estimated for 2025 at a cost of US$6,250, excluding taxes.
"We are seeing a tremendous interest from the United States, specifically for markets such as golf cart communities, (corporate) campuses, sharing platforms, hotels and resorts, amusement parks and inner city services," said Hoevers.
As its name suggests, the Solar City is topped by a roof sporting 250 Wp of photovoltaic cells, with the company stating that drivers might be able to add up to 22 km of range to the batteries on a sunny day in the Netherlands or 19.2 miles under Las Vegas sunshine – meaning some commuters could "find that charging is not even necessary."
Each vehicle can accommodate up to four 1.6-kWh Li-ion batteries for that maximum range of 100 km, and they're swappable for fresh ones so users could potentially haul spares in the 168-liters of storage space inside – though one of the press renders does suggest that battery swap stations could be rolled out at some point in the future.
The vehicle features two in-wheel motors to the rear rated at 2 kW or 3 kW each, and will drive out under L6e or L7 homologation in Europe for top speeds of 45 km/h (former) or 70 km/h (latter) and LSV in the US at a maximum of 25 mph.
The microEV is built around an aluminum space frame with a roll cage plus crash protection front and rear, there are safety belts on all seats, and disc brakes at each wheel.
Doors are optional for the standard model on its way to the US, but the Buggy rocks a tubular barrier on each side for protection. Other differences to the regular Solar City include a rear rack (for carrying surfboards to the beach), as well as special wheel and tires. All Buggy accessories will be available for order separately.
Squad Mobility reports that production priority is being given to the two-person L6/LSV and L7 models, but a four-person L7 flavor is planned, along with a cargo version. A regular two-battery Solar City LSV microEV is priced at $6,250 before tax. The Solar Buggy is the first Special Edition to be revealed, and will be on show at the Squad booth at the CES 2024 Eureka Park in Las Vegas from January 9.
Source: Squad Mobility