Aptera’s Steve Fambro Interviewed About Three-Wheeled Egg Car

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Gizmag has a nice piece up about the Aptera Typ-1 vehicle, hung on an interview with co-founder and CEO Steve Fambro. The more I hear about this car, the more entranced I become. They are reporting a projected 300mpg for the hybrid model, which will come out after the all-electric model.

Into the future, Steve Fambro believes that people and companies will eventually begin changing their habits to take into account the importance of energy consumption, and Aptera intends to remain at the forefront by adhering to its focus on efficiency and safety. “By changing the fundamental design constraint of the company from the very beginning – making it all about energy and safety – that design ethos is in every design element that we do. Towards the future it’s about energy in all forms, lithium is not easy to get either and we don’t want to leave one drug for another drug – oil for lithium – we are rethinking how we use the energy radically differently and will continue to make that a core part of the product.

Pardon the joke, but “Oil for Lithium” would be a really righteous band name.

If I had any reason whatsoever to own a car, my $500 deposit would already be down on one of these. I realize this makes me the same guy who in the ’70s would have been pulling his tiny little European or Japanese runabout into the driveway of his three-bedroom ranch to the open-mouthed gawks of his Chrysler-washing neighbors, but I’m completely okay with that.

Aptera officially launches futuristic, super-efficient three wheeler [Gizmag]

Previously: Aptera Three-Wheeled Electric Car May Reach Production [Gadgets.BoingBoing.net]

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5 Responses to Aptera’s Steve Fambro Interviewed About Three-Wheeled Egg Car

  1. Crash says:

    Of course the bigger problem with trading oil for lithium is that the energy density of gasoline is approximately 46.9 megajoules per kilogram, while the energy density of a rechargable lithium ion battery tops out around 0.72 MJ/kg. With a specific gravity of 732.2 kg/cu.m, a 20-gallon automobile gas tank works out to around 55.8kg, so to store that much energy you would need a lithium battery weighing 3,635 kilograms, or four tons!

    Even though electric motors are about four times as efficient as gas engines (95% thermal efficiency vs 25%), that’s still a one-ton power source, about half the weight of the average passenger car by itself.

    (I don’t mean to make it sound like the electric car is a bad idea, because it isn’t; just that lithium batteries were never a realistic means of storing the power for them.)

  2. Tubman says:

    @#3, Crash: It’s worth bearing in mind that an electric vehicle is unlikely to require the same range as a gas powered car, so your calculations may in part be moot.

    In their current form, battery cars are impractical over long distances anyway because you can’t as yet charge a battery in anything like as short a time as it takes to fill up a gas tank.

    In an urban setting, gas powered cars still need a decent-sized tank because you have to go to a gas station to refuel, whereas batteries don’t because (at least in theory) you can plug them into a power outlet whenever you park them.

  3. yani365 says:

    Very cool car.

    However with three wheels, at least in NY, this is a motorcycle which requires the use of helmets.

    I’ll have to wait for the 4 wheel version.

  4. Anonymous says:

    This is not a true 300 mpg but a “math and science” game. They calculate it by going 120 miles with a fully charged battery, it’ll use about 0.4 gallons of gas (besides discharging the battery), hence, 300 mpg. The “true” mileage is about 130 mpg.
    This is a highly efficient machine to drive 55 mph and achieve 130 mpg, in fact, there’s not much fat left to cut. But at the same time there’s no need to claim 300 mpg and pretend that the electrical charge in the battery is “free”.
    I would own one, that’s for sure. I will own one, actually, as soon as they come to Canada. How do I open a dealership? I’d run one of the Aptera stores for sure!
    This is one funky machine, hopefully some of the mainstream car companies are taking notice! Hey Ford any chance of a 130 mpg sportster?? I really want one.
    Grunchy

  5. darkbeanie says:

    Oil for lithium is an argument with some merit, as much of it doesn’t come from domestic sources. And we’re going to need a lot of it, for certain if lithium ion (lithium iron phosphate LiFePO4 especially) becomes the standard for hybrid and electric cars.

    However, there is one very important difference. Lithium is a material. Oil and its products are a fuel. Lithium can be recycled.

    I can only hope that a large industry and recycled lithium market develops around this, as it certainly should if the metal becomes sufficiently scarce.

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