Automotive

Defiant EV blends modern tech with old-school style

The Defiant definitely won't be mistaken for anything else ... except perhaps a Deuce Coupe
The Defiant definitely won't be mistaken for anything else ... except perhaps a Deuce Coupe
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Shockwave founder John McMillan, in the back of the Defiant
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Shockwave founder John McMillan, in the back of the Defiant
The Defiant definitely won't be mistaken for anything else ... except perhaps a Deuce Coupe
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The Defiant definitely won't be mistaken for anything else ... except perhaps a Deuce Coupe
The 1,500-lb (680-kg) Defiant seats two passengers behind its center-located driver
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The 1,500-lb (680-kg) Defiant seats two passengers behind its center-located driver
The DefiantI has a top speed of over 70 mph (113 km/h), goes from 0 to 60 mph (97 km/h) within about 10 seconds, and has a range of up to 100 miles (161 km) per charge of its 100-amp/144-volt lithium-ion battery pack
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The DefiantI has a top speed of over 70 mph (113 km/h), goes from 0 to 60 mph (97 km/h) within about 10 seconds, and has a range of up to 100 miles (161 km) per charge of its 100-amp/144-volt lithium-ion battery pack
If you'd like a Defiant, expect to pay US$24,950
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If you'd like a Defiant, expect to pay US$24,950

When it comes to electric cars, there tend to be two types – those that try to look totally normal (like the Tesla Model S) and those that look ultra-futuristic (like the Aptera 2e). Tennessee-based Shockwave Motors, however, has taken another approach. The design of its three-wheeled Defiant EV3 Roadster is distinctly "classic." It's the electric car that ZZ Top might drive.

Looking kind of like a retro version of the gas-powered DeltaWing, the 1,500-lb (680-kg) Defiant seats two passengers behind its center-located driver. Things like groceries or suitcases will fit in its trunk.

It has a top speed of over 70 mph (113 km/h), goes from 0 to 60 mph (97 km/h) within about 10 seconds, and has a range of up to 100 miles (161 km) per charge of its 100-amp/144-volt lithium-ion battery pack. That battery can reportedly be recharged from empty within eight hours, via a standard 120-volt wall outlet. Shockwave founder John McMillan tells us that buyers will likely have the option of going with a higher-capacity battery, which will offer a range of 175 miles (282 km). Regenerative braking should help it arrive at that figure.

There's no word on what sort of motor the final version will feature.

The 1,500-lb (680-kg) Defiant seats two passengers behind its center-located driver
The 1,500-lb (680-kg) Defiant seats two passengers behind its center-located driver

While some people might wonder about the stability of its delta trike design (with one wheel in the front), McMillan claims that its long wheelbase, wide rear stance and the majority of its weight being located in the back all keep it from flipping over in the corners.

Safety features include a tubular steel frame with a built-in roll bar, along with front and rear crumple zones. Road bumps are handled by a dual A arm suspension, coil-over shocks, and dual springs in both the front and rear.

John is hoping to begin production of the Defiant sometime next year. If you'd like one, expect to pay US$24,950 – that price includes a stereo system, heater and defroster.

You can see the prototype in action, in the video below.

Source: Shockwave Motors

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8 comments
Mel Tisdale
At last, an obvious application for autonomous vehicle technology! This needs radar sensors that can inform the driver - be they person, or computer - that the gap they are about to enter will, should they continue, end up wider than at present, or the car narrower. In other words, the layout is no good for driving in heavy traffic. The layout does lend itself to stereo nagging by backseat drivers, though that is hardly an advantage.
Bob Stuart
When the true classics were drawn, those design elements were arranged harmoniously, with graceful proportions. This evokes a Hot Rod.
DavidB
THIS is a retro EV three-wheeler worth having: http://www.gizmag.com/morgan-electrifies-the-3-wheeler/38234/ If you prefer the hot-rod look in an EV: http://www.gizmag.com/lightning-electric-hot-rod/20586/
Daniel Harbin
Dang thats an ugly looking vehicle. The profile is Rod like but then its gets worse. I want my Rods to have a roar to it. The sheer raw sound of some cubes speaking to me through a set of headers. This definitely misses the mark and in my estimation is in the pansy league.
Madlyb
While I love the old hot rod styling cues, that is still a big bundle of ugly. I just don't get these Delta wing cars.
Bob Flint
Have you noticed how the rear wheels tracked over the solid centerline a few times in this video perhaps forgetting the wider rear end. Imagine having to do a emergency maneuver with a single narrow front wheel. Also won't be drivable in winter with deep snow rutted road and the front wheel skipping all over the place maybe just put a ski around the wheel sort of how small planes do it.
bergamot69
I happen to be a 3 wheeler fan (in principle anyway- the only one I've ever driven was a Lomax 223). But they tend to work better with the single wheel at the back,as with the Lomax, Morgan 3-Wheeler, Grinnal Scorpion, etc.All those aforementioned cars make little or no attempt at practicality for all-year all-purpose motoring, however. Quite apart from the issues mentioned above (especially how it would drive in winter), it would be interesting to see how it would fare in a crash, as it has a very small frontal area in which to absorb any impact. Sadly, I think this car will be consigned to the 'oddities' bin of history...
AliciaRussell
Side view looks cool..... Front view not so much.