Solar-powered car that can ‘drive for months without charging’ to hit roads this summer
By: April Carson
The Lightyear One is a solar-powered electric car that can travel 725 kilometers on one charge. It uses the power of sunlight to keep its 60 kWh battery charged. In the Netherlands, a pilot project with 50 cars will start this summer.
A solar-powered electric car, which the maker claims can drive for "months" without requiring to charge, is one step closer to production.
The Lightyear One, a solar-powered electric vehicle created in the Netherlands and just tested in Italy, covered 400 kilometers on a single charge while moving at a constant speed of 130km/h.
According to the manufacturer, average usage will result in a range of 725 kilometers (WLTP).
But, in theory, the Lightyear One can purportedly be driven "for months without charging," according to its maker.
The Lightyear One, according to its creator, can live off-the-grid due to its combination of solar panels that collect energy from the sun to charge the 60kWh battery.
The One's roof, bonnet, and tail are each covered with five square meters of solar panels that can produce up to 12 kilometers of range every hour. That means a parked Lightyear One may harvest 96 kilometers of driving range – more than enough for most people's daily journeys - during an 8 hour workday under bright sunshine.
Even in poor weather, the Lightyear One is advertised as having a range of 40 kilometers.
Assuming people drive an average of 30 kilometers per day, the car's battery would theoretically never need to be plugged in - though Lightyear says the vehicle will come with a fast-charging system for those who want to top up their battery more quickly.
With just 30% power from the sun, the Lightyear One's 60-kWh battery array is reported to offer a claimed 725 kilometers of range, making it, according to the manufacturer, the most energy efficient electric car on the market.
"Lightyear One can travel one and a half times further than a directly comparable vehicle with the same battery size if we compare it to other cars now," says Megan Parfitt, Lightyear One's Vehicle Test Coordinator.
According to the manufacturer, the recent 130km/h test produced a figure of 14.1kWh per 100 kilometers. This number drops to 8.3kWh per 100 kilometers when driving under normal conditions, according on the maker.
Thanks to its aluminum and carbon-fiber construction, the Lightyear One boasts a kerb weight of just 1315kg, allowing for increased efficiency.
The company plans to make 500 Lightyear Ones available for purchase this summer, with production taking place at its facility in The Netherlands.
It has a tear-drop form that is suited for gliding through the air, with a drag coefficient of 0.20cd.
The motivation comes from five electric motors, one at each wheel. They generate a combined 101kW and 1200Nm. According to Lightyear One, its five-seater sedan is designed for cruising rather than speed and claims a 0-100km/h sprint time of around 10 seconds.
The Lightyear One is made in Finland. The company has not yet announced when it will begin selling the Lightyear One, but deliveries are anticipated to start mid-2022 in Europe. It costs around €150,000 (AUD$238,000). Only 946 vehicles will be produced.
Tesla is also planning to release a more budget-friendly solar-powered electric vehicle. The Lightyear Two, which will be available in 2024/25 with a starting price of €30,000 (AUD$47,600), is expected to become the most affordable car in the world.
The public has been largely deprived of information, although it is known that global automobile leasing firm LeasePlan recently booked 5000 Lightyear Twos in order to add to its current fleet of 1.8 million vehicles.
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About the Blogger:
April Carson is the daughter of Billy Carson. She received her bachelor's degree in Social Sciences from Jacksonville University, where she was also on the Women's Basketball team. She now has a successful clothing company that specializes in organic baby clothes and other items. Take a look at their most popular fall fashions on bossbabymav.com
To read more of April's blogs, check out her website! She publishes new blogs on a daily basis, including the most helpful mommy advice and baby care tips! Follow on IG @bossbabymav
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