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Aptera, a California startup, has bought a factory for their solar cars. But, rather than forming an assembly line, robots will bring the solar vehicles from station to station.
Fossil Fuel to Electric to Solar
In the United States, driving puts more greenhouse gasses into the air than any other division, electricity, or industry. So, transitioning from fossil fuel cars to electric ones is critical in battling climate change.
Many are discouraged from buying EVs due to the supposed hassle of affordability and charging — people who are looking to spend less than $30,000 on a new car will see far more options for gas-fueled over EVs.
Aptera’s solar car
Aptera’s vehicle is created to overcome both of these issues.
The solar car is light, with an aerodynamic body with only three wheels. These designs make this car extremely energy efficient, which minimizes the rate drivers need to charge it.
Aptera owners might never have to plug it in, which depends on the weather, because of the car’s solar panels. If the solar vehicle is parked under the sun, these panels can deliver 40 miles per day of range — enough for most people’s driving needs.
An efficient solar car won’t be good if it’s not affordable to buy, so Aptera is planning to sell its low-range model (250 miles) for only $25,900 and to guarantee it can make that price point. Then, this startup is taking its efficiency-first ideas to the factory.
New Factory for Solar Cars
Aptera announced in 2022 that they would rely on platform robots built by manufacturer RedViking, in their new factory to move its vehicles from one station to another in the assembly procedure.
This method will make it much simpler to alter the manufacturing procedure shortly and will also deal with any problems in production. For example, if there is a car issue, Aptera can train a robot to move it out of the way for particular attentiveness.
Reserving Your Solar Car
Aptera has acquired 25,000 reservations for their solar car, with each potential buyer putting down a $100 deposit.
By the end of 2022, they expect to deliver their first pre-production vehicle, the models that come after the prototype and before mass-produced solar cars.
They will use customer feedback to make changes to their design before moving to total production, to manufacture 600,000 solar cars each year, assuming that people won’t mind a three-wheeled design.