Automotive

Solo EV delivered to first US customer

The LA-bound Solo EV
The LA-bound Solo EV
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The LA-bound Solo EV
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The LA-bound Solo EV

When it comes to quirky little cars, a lot of them have a way of forever staying on the cusp of commercial availability, without ever actually reaching consumers. Well, you can't say that about the Solo, a three-wheeled electric vehicle that was recently shipped to its first US buyer.

Made by Vancouver-based company Electra Meccanica and legally considered a motorcycle, the single-passenger Solo has an 82-hp (61-kW) electric motor driving its rear wheel, taking it to a top speed of 82 mph (130 km/h) – it goes from 0-62 mph (100 km/h) in less than eight seconds. Its 17.3-kWh lithium-ion battery charges in three hours at a 220 V charging station or about six with 110 V, giving the car a range of up to 100 miles (161 km).

It's priced at CAD$19,888, or about US$15,500.

This Wednesday, Electra Meccanica announced that the first US-certified Solo had been shipped to its Los Angeles-based buyer. Ex-IndyCar driver Dominic Dobson, who is the Solo sales rep for Washington and Oregon, was on hand to "greet" the vehicle as it passed through his area.

"Driving the Solo today reminded me of my days driving formula cars," he said. "It was so quick and nimble, it just made me giggle and I thoroughly enjoyed it."

Plans now call for a total of 75,000 Solos to be delivered to the US market over the next three years, with deliveries beginning in the middle of this September.

Source: Electra Meccanica via Electrek

16 comments
Grunchy
It's already too easy to tip over a smart car. The kids are going to go nuts over this! (Curiously they never tip over motorcycles, dunno why)
sugamari
never to be available in canada I bet
Tom Lee Mullins
I think that is good. I hope to see one in my area so I can check it out. Smart cars are not as easy to tip over as one would think. I hope this is true of this vehicle too.
Daishi
Technically Arcimoto has delivered 1 production vehicle as well (to Nathan Fillion). Sonders (of inexpensive ebike fame) is also planning to produce an enclosed 3 wheel EV. I think Sonders has some potential too but I think their $10k price is going to be difficult to hit. Their prototype looks sharp though.
Bob
82hp but only 82mph? 0-62mph in 8 seconds? It's going to have to do better than that to get much interest. It looks nice but I could imagine being rear ended by someone who misjudged the size coming up behind it.
Neil Larkins
Little pricier than I thought it would be, but looks great. As for tipping over, whether on purpose or in driving, would be harder to do than a Smart car. Wouldn't mind having one.
jerryd
A nice little future tech EV and the lowest cost EV car in the US. It's built by a race car engineering firm branching out in all composites like a F-1 for safety and strength. Because it's battery pack is low and between the front wheels it has very low CG and very stable, out handling all but race cars. For it's main purpose, commuting, pizza delivery, etc where running and parking costs this can make money as not only saving but you get $.53/mile tax credit for business use and only cost $.20/mile or less.
Lardo
I'm sorry. I just don't see that many buyers lining up for a $15,000 machine that has only a 100 mile range, and takes 3 to 6 hours to recharge. And if it's going to take them another 4 to 5 months to get production going... how did they manage to get this ONE vehicle done? Was it like a hand-built prototype, or something?
Nik
Back in the 60's, a conversion for the Mini was to change the rear wheels for a pair side by side, making it technically a three wheeler. The front wheel drive was very stable, and the car handled well. This configuration was also used for racing in motorcycle sidecar races. Rear wheel drives on a three wheeler, are not particularly stable, and dont handle as well at speed. The mini was a 'two-plus-two' seater, two adults plus two kids. This machine seems exceedingly expensive, for a solo, especially when compared to a motorcycle. Most people will feel that they are far too vulnerable in this ''bubble car'' when in amongst normal traffic. I'll be surprised if more than a few dozen are sold before production ceases due to lack of sales.
Grunchy
"Tip over smart car" via Google, see for yourself. Plenty of examples.