Harnessing the power of the sun, the ultra-efficient Aptera is a solar electric vehicle that hardly ever needs charging. Rose Dykins reports
Aptera has unveiled its Launch Edition solar electric vehicle, an ultra-efficient car that promises to make solar mobility and freedom from the grid a reality.
Aptera’s Launch Edition comes with an integrated solar charging package that allows most people to drive for weeks, even months, without having to plug in to charge.
This means consistent access to EV charge points isn’t needed with the car. In a location with very high sun exposure (such as Southern California) the average driver would never have to plug in, based on a daily average journey of 29 miles.
In a location with medium sun exposure (such as New York or Chicago), drivers will only need to plug in roughly three times per year.With its distinctive shape and ultra-lightweight body, Aptera is able to move through the air using one quarter of the energy compared to other electric and hybrid vehicles. For road trips, a tent can also be attached so travellers don’t need to check into a motel. Equipped with 700 Watts of solar technology, the solar electric vehicle (sEV) can drive for up to 40 miles per day from pure solar power. It also has one of the longest ranges of any electric vehicle, with up to 1,000 miles per charge.
Aptera can also be charged at any standard power outlet in the world. When plugged into a 120V outlet, Aptera’s Launch Edition can still charge over 13 miles per hour (150 miles overnight).Steve Fambro, co-founder and co-CEO of Aptera, says: “We’ve solved the equation for a more efficient way to travel by harnessing the power of the sun, and we’re excited to introduce our Launch Edition vehicle to the world.
“Our tireless efforts have resulted in the Aptera vehicle, that can take you where you want to go using the creative energy directly from our sun and efficiently converted into free movement.”
In partnership with CPC Group, Aptera has also developed an efficient and streamlined process for manufacturing their Launch Edition vehicles, which allows for quicker deliveries and a better use of raw materials.A core part of this process is Aptera’s specialised composite body, or Body in Carbon – BinC. The BinC takes much less time to assemble than standard aluminium bodies and helps guarantees consistent quality and repeatability, helping to futureproof Aptera’s ability to produce its vehicles at scale.
Aptera is finalising the fourth and final phase of its product development, Delta. As part of this phase, Aptera will complete crash testing and validation. Once completed, Aptera plans to scale quickly and produce 10,000 vehicles per year, and eventually double this to 20,000 vehicles per year.“While our delivery timeline is funding dependent, our goal is to begin production by the end of 2023,” says Chris Anthony, co-founder and co-CEO of Aptera.
“Once we meet our fundraising objectives, we will be able to provide a more accurate delivery timeline. Our Launch Edition is our chance to show the world something that’s never existed before. Our identity at Aptera is about transformation, reinvention and surprises.”