May 29, 2024


General Line

Sono Motors shows production-ready solar-powered car, unveils retrofit kit for buses


Sono Motors has debuted the production design of its Sion, a battery-electric crossover that uses photo voltaic cells to deliver electrical power and lengthen variety.

The Munich-centered startup, which trades on the Nasdaq beneath SEV, pitches the Sion as “the world’s initially cost-effective solar electric motor vehicle.”

At a Munich occasion Monday, Sono also unveiled a photo voltaic package for diesel buses that transit solutions can use to offer power to subsystems this sort of as HVAC and lower gas usage and emissions.

But in the Sion, solar will assistance refill the batteries that electric power propulsion. The automobile options 456 solar fifty percent-cells that generate plenty of electrical power to increase about 70 to 150 miles for every 7 days to the assortment, depending on weather and driving disorders. It can be enough photo voltaic electricity to “enable self-sufficiency on quick journeys,” the firm mentioned. The Sion’s 54-kilowatt-hour lithium iron phosphate battery has an believed selection of 189 miles.

Selling place of photo voltaic

Supplementing the car with photo voltaic-produced energy gives up to four times extra array than uncovered on autos with the identical battery sizing, explained Laurin Hahn, co-founder and CEO of Sono Motors.

“Which is the selling position of photo voltaic,” he told Automotive News.

The Sion’s battery has a utmost charging potential of up to 75 kilowatts DC and 11 kW AC. Bidirectional charging enabled by the car’s photo voltaic panels lets powering of digital products, a house or even other electrical automobiles at up to an 11-kW output.

Sono is generating a fleet of validation vehicles in Munich. The organization claimed they would be analyzed in Europe and the U.S. in distinctive climates. The tests will protect validation, homologation, crash safety and improving the photo voltaic technological know-how and driving dynamics on examination tracks and public streets.

The Sion has an approximated price of about $26,000. Sono said it had additional than 19,000 reservations for the automobile at the start off of July, each with an typical down payment of about $2,300. Manufacturing will start out in the 2nd half of 2023, Hahn mentioned.

“We system to create 257,000 motor vehicles with Valmet Automotive, our contract producer that generates the Mercedes-Benz GLC and GLA,” Hahn stated.

Sono designs to market place the Sion in Europe initially.

“But you will find huge likely in other markets, and we will before long disclose them,” Hahn added.

Incorporate-on for community transport buses

The enterprise also has its eyes on larger autos. Its Photo voltaic Bus Package is an add-on for 12-meter general public transport buses these types of as the Mercedes-Benz Citaro and Person Lion Town.

The kit can save up to nearly 400 gallons of diesel and reduce CO2 emissions by up to 4 tons per bus for each calendar year when working with about 8 square meters of photo voltaic panels, according to Sono.

It “has a payback time of in between 3 and 4 many years, and these buses operate for 10, 15, 20 years,” Hahn explained.

Sono is focusing on diesel cars initial.

“We are concentrating on a market of 10,000 motor vehicles for the upcoming 10 a long time and where we see large opportunity of preserving fossil fuels,” Hahn explained.

The organization has not launched pricing facts for the kit.

Sono is partnering with 19 firms worldwide, like Gentleman Truck & Bus and fridge-truck maker Cherea to put into action its retrofit kit on a variety of autos, which includes buses, trailers, vans and electrical transporters. It can be also partnered with logistic huge Rhenus to make a prototype past-mile delivery automobile with solar integration.

“There is certainly massive opportunity in logistics,” Hahn stated. “They need to move to zero emissions and are urgently looking for answers. This is one particular of them.”


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