Dutch high-tech outfit Lightyear has previewed its second-generation solar-powered car, Lightyear 2.
The start-up broke new ground with Lightyear 0, becoming the first company to make a commercial go of a series production solar-powered electric car.
It’s now kicking on with Lightyear 2, which it says will make EV ownership more accessible, convenient and affordable.
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It just announced at CES in Las Vegas that it’s begun taking reservations for Lightyear 2.
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Supposedly, it’s already received 21,000 pre-orders from a number of leasing and ride-sharing companies.
Not a surprise really considering the crossover has a claimed range of over 800 kilometers (500 miles).
Lightyear also claims that Lightyear 2 will have half the lifetime CO2 output of a conventional battery EV, having the smallest carbon footprint of any car on the market.
What can we expect?
Unfortunately powertrain, battery and performance details haven’t been revealed yet.
What we do know, though, is that Lightyear 2 is expected to be loosely based on Lightyear 0.
That particular car has a motor on each wheel and a 60kWh battery, with a 0-100 km/h (0-62 mph) time in a leisurely 10 seconds.
Lightyear 2 is likely to have a strip of photovoltaic cells running over the car similar in scope to Lightyear 0.
These will draw its energy from the sun, acting in essence as a range extender for the battery.
“Lightyear 2 will fast-track our mission of delivering clean mobility to everyone everywhere,” said Lightyear Co-Founder and CEO Lex Hoefsloot.
“This is the first EV that allows consumers to prioritize sustainability without compromising on practicality.
“By harnessing the power of the sun, Lightyear 2 elevates the electric driving experience and reduced reliance on strained electricity grids.
“In fact, while Lightyear 2 vehicles require less charging from the electricity grid than a conventional EV, they also flip the script by providing clean energy back into the grid.”
Lightyear 2 price
Lightyear has opened a waiting list for the car, which it claims will cost less than $40,000.
Set to go into production in 2025, Lightyear 2 will be sold in the US, UK and Europe, with Lightyear targeting 100,000 deliveries per year.