Sono crash-tests its Sion photo voltaic EV, says panels “behave as predicted”

Sono Motors introduced Tuesday that it had accomplished the primary crash exams of its Sion EV, which has photo voltaic cells built-in with each physique panel.

The corporate mentioned in a press launch that these panels “behave as predicted,” with no splintering of the polymer-based materials in a 31-mph frontal crash take a look at, confirming no further danger to automobile occupants or bystanders.

This take a look at, carried out at specialist facility CSI in Italy, would be the first of many for the Sion. Sono anticipates conducting round 300 crash exams to homologate the Sion underneath the European New Automobile Evaluation Program (NCAP), because it’s solely accepting reservations from European prospects proper now.

Sono Sion

Sono Sion

Sono additionally detailed the driver-assist options that shall be accessible on the Sion. Ahead-collision warnings, computerized emergency braking, lane-departure warnings, lane-keep help, a driver-attention monitor, traffic-sign recognition, and rear park help shall be normal at launch. Sono plans so as to add adaptive cruise management after the beginning of manufacturing by way of an over-the-air (OTA) replace.

The Sion is probably the primary automobile due for mass manufacturing that may use each physique panel as a photo voltaic panel, which Sono has mentioned can prolong the estimated 190-mile vary by as much as 152 miles per week in optimum climate circumstances, in addition to enable the automobile to be a cellular house energy financial institution.

Sono Sion production model

Sono Sion manufacturing mannequin

The tempo hasn’t precisely been speedy. The corporate confirmed a manufacturing model of the Sion in 2019, which it is developed considerably since then. It is now scheduled to begin manufacturing at contractor Valmet in Finland later this yr, with a base worth equal to $27,000 at present trade charges.

Final summer time, Sono reported that it had hit 20,000 reservations, and with this week’s announcement it reiterated that for now reservations can solely be made within the EU, and it would not settle for reservations from the U.S. However that hasn’t stored the corporate from attempting to woo U.S. fleet enterprise for its photo voltaic tech, which additionally consists of elements so as to add supplementary solar energy for diesel vans and buses.