A solar-powered car will see the light of day and enter production next year.
The Sono Motors Sion is a small electric utility vehicle equipped with solar panels on all of its surfaces that are capable adding 21 miles of range to the battery pack on a sunny day, according to the German company.
While small solar panels have been featured on electric cars before, including the Nissan Leaf and Fisker Karma, the Scion will be the first designed to generate enough electricity to add a significant amount of range. The plug-in vehicle has an overall range of around 150 miles and is built on a skateboard-style platform that could potentially accommodate a variety of body types.
The cars will be manufactured at an old Saab facility in Trollhattan, Sweeden, in collaboration with NEVS, the company that acquired most of Saab’s assets in 2012 after it filed for bankruptcy. Sono expects to produce approximately 32,000 Sions annually and already has 9,800 orders for the $29,000 vehicle.