Dutch startup starts producing first-ever solar-powered car
The Lightyear-0 has already recorded 150 pre-orders.
Lightyear, a Dutch vehicle startup founded in 2016, has started making the world's first electric vehicle series which is powered directly from sunlight.
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The Lightyear 0 - the first model of the production series - is priced at $259,000, and has already recorded 150 pre-orders. The company plans to make about a thousand of the aforementioned model at a Valmet Automotive Oyj factory in Finland.
Solar-powered #Electric car that can be driven 'for months without charging' goes on sale in #Australia— Santanu Bhattacharya (@SantanuB01) February 26, 2022
The Lightyear One features a range of 725km and can harness the power of the sun to keep its 60kWh battery topped up
This is an awesome innovation for the planet 👏🙏🌏 pic.twitter.com/f2phWelBB3
The facility will be producing one car per week. By the second half of next year, car production is predicted to increase to 5 on a weekly basis, CEO and co-founder Lex Hoefsloot told Bloomberg.
The specifications of the car include curved solar panels across the hood and the roof; in addition to its brilliant ability to drive 2 months without charging in Amsterdam during the summer and even 7 months in Portugal - not bad considering an energy crisis in Europe.
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The solar-powered car can add 70 km of driving range on a daily basis. The current invention is a breakthrough for the reason that sun-powered cars have struggled for long to make it beyond the prototype stage, as solar panels require large surface areas.
Hoefsloot explains that fundraising in the early days was a challenge, as investors were reluctant to put their money into a new concept. He explains that "right now, we're at a much more mature" stage, noting that the bulk of investments came from the Netherlands. In September, Lightyear mustered €81 million in investments from the country.
Lightyear has also been developing the Lightyear 2, which is its second high-volume model, with a starting price of €30,000. The car is projected to start being produced in 2025.