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Arcimoto: Electric Cars Actually Make Going Green Make (Dollars) and Sense.

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When one mentions electric cars, what do you think of? Do you think of those golf cart type cars? Hybrids don’t count but what about the GM Chevy Volt or the Nissan Leaf? Those big brands are out there but don’t put your money down quite yet. There are some new kids on the block for your perusal.

Arcimoto has been catching people’s eyes– most notably the engineering folks and also celebrities like Castle’s Nathan Fillion who are prowling around waiting to pounce the new models to figure out which one they want to buy and how much they can amp it up.

I first heard about this vehicle on Twitter when Nathan Fillion was talking about it. I had heard hushed mutterings about a car out of Oregon but hadn’t paid much attention.  Once Filliion started tweeting about his test-drives  in Oregon, I sent emails to the company and hoped to get a reply– and I did!!

Earlier this year, I got an email and phone call from Jeremy Bonson (Arcimoto’s Creative Director) saying they were going to be in LA and whether I would like a test drive. Never one to say no to something that is so ground-breaking, I jumped at the chance to see this car!  Granted it was a Generation 4 prototype (Generation 5 is  the production model)  Arcimoto ramped up the cool factor by bringing along the company president Mark Frohnmayer and a few other company staffers along with bringing the car to me to test drive.. I was so thrilled that I set up a quick video interview with Mark along with a drive around the parking lot.  First, here are some specs on the vehicle:

Generation 4 Platform Prototype Specifications

Specifications are subject to change

Drive System HPGC AC50 induction motor
5.13 : 1 ring and pinion gear reduction
Front-wheel drive
Regenerative braking system
Estimated Range 40 miles, base pack, lead-acid batteries
80 miles, commuter pack, lithium iron phosphate batteries
160 miles, touring pack, lithium iron phosphate batteries
Ergonomics Fully comfortable front and back seat
Safety 3-wheel manual disc brakes
Mechanically actuated parking brake
3-point seat belts
Space frame design with full roll cage and crumple zone

 

The cool factor is so much more than you can see just by looking at the photo or even seeing it on the video. It’s better to be in the vehicle because it’s

1) quiet
2) smooth thanks to amazing suspension
3) easy handling for manual steering
4) and once you pass 30 MPH, it flies!

Arcimoto is taking pre-orders now for the initial production run. There are four models to choose that top out at 65 mph. Definitely a car that can do local driving easily and has room according to their site “for groceries or golf clubs”.

Here’s the video interview with Arcimoto president and a short test drive.

As you can see, this is one unusual car, and the new upcoming production models provide storage as well as options that will make this a fun, affordable and energy efficient car to drive.

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About Stevie

  • Bobolink

    Who can even tell what they are saying? Spend a few dollars at radio shack for some wireless mics next time.

  • http://www.la-story.com Stevie Wilson

    would love to see the 5th iteration which is the production version as well. They have the 4 models on their site.

  • ACBooth

    For taxes, tags, and insurance…is this considered a motorcycle? Any cities where they WON’T allow them on the streets? And, How Much and When available in Ga or Fl?

  • http://www.la-story.com Stevie Wilson

    In California, this is considered a motorcyle — and would also have some incentive for purchasing this kind of vehicle and it would be eligible for the HOV lane. (Note the information is only about California)
    For the answers to your other questions, please query Arcimoto as they would be able to better inform you of the answers. I would only be going to them and they would be passing on information that should go straight to you and you would inevitably have MORE questions.