Dutch start-up Lightyear has shown off a prototype of its One long-range solar car at the Goodwood Festival of Speed.
The One is a lightweight, four-wheel drive, coupé-style four-door, which Lightyear says will offer a range of around 450 miles on the WLTP combined cycle from a solar-electric hybrid powertrain. The static prototype was first revealed in June, and makes its public debut at the Sussex event.
Lightyear claims the One is able to achieve this segment-leading range even with a much smaller battery than that found in equivalent BEVs, because it consumes much less energy than conventional electric cars.
Each wheel is independently driven, minimising loss of energy throughout the drivetrain, while the use of ultra-light materials for its body construction reduces strain on the battery’s output.
As well as generating as much as 12,430 miles worth of energy each year from solar power, the One can be charged from a conventional domestic 230V outlet, gaining up to 250 miles of range overnight
The car’s five-metre-square solar panels are located on its roof and bonnet, comprising solar cells integrated in safety glass so strong that, Lightyear says, “a fully-grown adult can walk on them without causing dents.”
Company boss Lex Hoefsloot said: ““The main goal of the car is to fill in where electric cars fall short. Research has shown that range and the lack of charging options are still the top concerns that people have when considering purchasing electric cars.”