Monday, January 14, 2008

Between 230 - 330 Mpg?

This little doozey is called an Aptera. Despite being a prototype at this point, the numbers are impressive, and the intention for the price-point is as well. They don't intend for this to be a luxury or specialty vehicle at all.

The potential mileage is hard to explain as it has to be graphed, so a simple number like those in the title don't really capture the calculations. As the electricity drains, it changes -- "after 350-400 miles it eventually plummets to around 130 MPG." I love that they use the word "plummet" before 130 MPG, I could read that sentence over and over.

Safety concerns are to be taken care of with Formula-One crashbox technology and to exceed most of the passenger vehicle requirements.

As petroleum stores get more and more expensive to extract, technology will change.

Enjoy the unknown,



Tate said...

that is a sweet ride, i would give up my daniel craig and mike rowe for that... and that is saying a lot

Bpaul said...

Yes it is sir, yes it is LOL.

Stu Farnham said...

OK, here comes the old grump agin to piss in the sandbox. It's a nasty job, but someone has to do it.

Careful examination of the website leads me to believe that the vehicle does not exist yet. The have clearly prototyped the drivetrain, but the 230 MPG was gotten using a deisel hybrid, not the final gasoline-based motor.

The crash test results aree results gotten from simulations, not the real thing.

All of the pictures of the vehicle appear to be computer generated, not real photographs.

Certainly the results are encouraging; a touring motorcycle (the Aptera is classified as a motorcycle) such as the Honda Gold Wing is around 40MPG. But they still have to build the final protoype. They need to design and build the production process and facilities. And the final vehicle has to match the performance of prototypes and simulations.

They talk about safety in crash test (simulations). However, crash safety is only part of the equation. What are the handling characteristics? The geometry of this buggy is certainly innovative; how will it handle under duress?

The current website is a marketing vehicle and nothing more than that.

Enjoy this old poop. In the words of each of my parents "you'll miss me when I'm gone.

Bpaul said...

Prototype or no, it's bitching news.

I aught to have been more explicit about the prototype status, but I had to fly through the text on my way to catch a bus -- figured if folks were interested they could hit the site and get the specifics.

Bpaul said...

Text fixed sir.


Dickey45 said...

The car appears to be real - Stu didn't look at the site very much to miss all the videos. There are other cars out there like it (2 wheels in the front, 1 in the back). One other maker has it to where the wheel in the back actually angles back and forth with curves.

The problem isn't that they are lying. The problem is cost, red-tape, battery technology, and mass production.

I suspect in about 2-3 years there will be several options. Down the street in my small town (Corvallis), I can buy a zap car - 3 wheel. The problem is that it uses old lead batteries and likely has a flimsey outer shell - thus I question the safety.

This car was made to better safety standards.

Anonymous said...

Quite a few of the photos are real.

The possibilities for vehicles like this are exciting. I had no idea they were this close to a production car that had that kind of performance. Good find.

Micah said...

that was me above

astock27 said...

I watched the video of the CEO of the company driving the car into the company's launch party. Unless they took a video of him sitting on a moving milk crate and then photoshopped the car around him, I'm pretty sure the car is more than just a drawing on paper.

Bpaul said...

Ya, a prototype, but looks to be a working prototype nonetheless.

Marty said...

Read an article on this last week. What really made me take notice was their way of testing for low friction wheels for it. They put all the contenders on a cart with a bunch of weight in it and rolled it down a hill. The one that rolled the furthest was the winner. Talk about cutting back research costs.

Don Snabulus said...

Rome wasn't built in a fact, a small part of it has been built and torn down already.

There was a small bunch of GM cars, and Toyota RAV4 all-electric vehicles leased in California in the late 90s early 00s. The demand far exceeded the supply. Rather than risk success, the cars were destroyed when the leases expired. A tiny handful escaped the crusher and are still on the road.

That should have been the start of the green revolution and that capability still exists for current vehicles to run on batteries only. Also, the battery tech is so much better now, but the social climate is apparently still insufficient to jump start this market segment.