As its name implies, the Electra Meccanic Solo battery-electric vehicle has room for a driver only, with room in back for a few bags of groceries.
The three-wheeler with driving range of 125 miles isn’t meant to replace the family hauler, but can fill a need, said the company’s CEO, Jerry Kroll.
“It addresses the 83 percent of people who commute by themselves 30 miles or less each way,” Kroll said
Kroll, an experienced race car driver, who has run a high tech electric racing vehicle development company, teamed up with Henry Reisner, whose family’s business, InterMeccanica has been building custom vehicles and automobile parts since 1959.
Three-wheeled vehicles are often viewed with skepticism, but the Solo is the result of years of experience in engineering and building performance cars, and its founders are confident of its stability on the road.
“Because our engineering team’s specialty is building world-class sports cars, we focused on applying what we’ve learned over the last 50 years to the Solo.
“The batteries are slung low along the frame of the car so as to create an extremely low center of gravity, providing excellent handling,” said Henry Reisner, the car’s chief engineer.
The Solo’s 8.64 kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery provides the electricity for an 82-horsepower AC-synchronous electric motor that drives the rear wheel.
Acceleration from stop is about eight seconds, and top speed is 75 mph — enough to mingle with commuter traffic on highways and Interstates.
Weighing just 992 pounds, it’s small enough to fit into parking spaces marked for motorcycles.
Battery charge time is three hours using 240-volts, double for 120-volts.
While the Solo doesn’t offer room for two like Toyota’s i-Road three-wheel EV, it has more driving range and twice the top speed.
SEE ALSO: Toyota Launches i-ROAD EV In Geneva
The $15,539 price tag isn’t exactly cheap, but features like power windows, an audio system with Bluetooth and USB, along with a backup camera should keep commuters content.
Full production starts in mid-July, and Electra Meccanica has already received around 120 pre-orders from individuals.
That’s in addition to the claimed 20,500 commercial orders, which indicates the Solo would be an excellent choice for a courier or delivery vehicle.