Crowdfunded electric car revealed
Sono’s Sion will cost from around £11,000 when it goes on sale and can be recharged via solar power
The Sono Sion all-electric six-seater has been revealed, ahead of first deliveries in two years’ time.
The entry-level Sion Urban costs €12,000 (£10,800) and has a range of up to 74 miles, while the €16,000 (£14,400) Sion Extender features a 30kWh battery pack and a range of up to 155 miles.
Both variants six-seat configurations, with two rows of three seats, and are capable of being charged by solar energy, via 7.5 square metres of solar panels.
Interior details are limited, but a 10in infotainment screen dominates the dashboard and connects to smartphones via Bluetooth or wi-fi. More unusually, the Sion does without conventional pollen filters for the interior, instead using a strain of moss to filter and purify the air entering the cabin. Sono says the moss also reduces noise entering the cabin and is fire repellent.
The crowdfunding will enable Sono to produce a series of working prototypes, which customers will be able to test drive at the start of 2017. The company hopes to raise €150,000 (£135,000) to do this, with initial investors in line to receive the first Sion examples providing adequate funds can be raised.
Sono claims a top speed of 87mph for the Sion but has not yet disclosed a 0-62mph time. The car’s relatively small battery pack means it may be some way off the Tesla Model S P100D‘s 2.5sec sprint time.
As the electric car industry gears up, more and more EV startups are coming to the fore, including old names like Fisker, as well as new ones such as Atieva. Honda recently revealed a 3D printed all-electric microcar. It’s not the first time crowdfunding has been used in the automotive industry; Zenos employed the strategy earlier this year when developing its upcoming E11 and E12 models.