Innovative electric car features full-surface solar integration and more space.
4th March 2019 – Sono Motors, the German provider of sustainable mobility concepts and producer of the first series-produced electric car with solar integration, unveiled the first images of the Sion’s series design as part of a broad online release. The focus was placed on the full-surface incorporation of solar modules into the bodywork – one of the vehicle’s unique features that have influenced its design. Thanks to technology developed by Sono Motors, the solar cells meld seamlessly into the vehicle’s surface and can generate up to 35 kilometers of additional range a day at peak performance. This is well above the average distance of 17 kilometers commuters in Germany travel to their workplace.
“After unveiling our first prototype in summer 2017, we continued to develop our solar integration technology, which we have been working on since 2016,” explains Mathieu Baudrit, head of Research and Development, Solar Integration, at Sono Motors. “The production vehicle will feature full-surface integrated solar cells that are embedded in hard-wearing, resilient polymer and that contribute to the vehicle’s design aesthetic thanks to optimized color matching.”
The Sion’s dimensions are increasing. It is becoming larger, longer, and wider, its tail is more emphasized, and it generally looks more elongated. The production version of the Solar Electric Vehicle (SEV) and innovative five-door vehicle will boast a larger footwell and additional interior space. An additional side rear window guarantees an optimum all-round view. The rear will be more stepped and, in combination with the innovative LED rear light design, more three-dimensional.
Sono Motors is involving those who have preordered a Sion in the selection of certain vehicle details by means of community votes, and in doing so is exploring entirely new avenues in the field of vehicle development.
With the Sion, Sono Motors will introduce a carbon-offset electric car and the first mass-produced vehicle featuring solar integration to the market. The vehicle concept revolves around connectivity and intelligent application options. The car features integrated sharing services. An app allows people to share the vehicle itself, rides, and – thanks to a bidirectional charging function – also energy. Sono Motors plans to develop more vehicles based on the Sion platform, for example in the areas of urban mobility, logistics and transport or last mile, including for the international market.
The company has so far taken approximately 9,500 partially paid preorders for the Sion. For its market launch, the vehicle will be delivered in a version costing 25,500 euros.
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Sono Motors is on a mission to enable a revolutionary mobility system, where every electric vehicle is solar, shared, and independent from fossil-fuels. Today, an experienced specialist team is developing a forward-looking electric car that is suitable for daily use, the Sion. Both the Sion’s integrated solar technology and innovative mobility services will enable users to access clean mobility, harness solar energy and reduce CO2 impacts.
Sono Motors was founded in 2016 and has rapidly grown to more than 200 employees today. The team combines a range of burgeoning global talent with industry veterans, including former employees from BMW, Nissan, Chrysler, Daimler, Audi, Mozilla, Sixt, FlixBus and mytaxi. Since its foundation, the company has raised approximately €100 million through reservations and funding. The company released its first generation Sion prototype in 2017 and has amassed 14,000 reservations with advance payments. In 2018, Sono Motors was recognized as a Solar Impulse Efficient Solution by the Solar Impulse Foundation. In January of 2020, Sono Motors successfully closed one of the largest community crowdfunding campaigns in Europe.
Sono Motors’ Sion intends to blend disruptive technology with affordability to enable individual contribution to global sustainability. The Sono solar technology replaces traditional paint with proprietary integrated solar panels that can form to various applications. Additionally, the Sion’s solar panels can add 112 km or 70 mi on average (up to 245 km or 152 mi) of additional driving range per week to the car’s battery. The Sion is expected to have the lowest TCO (total cost of ownership) in its category at the start of production, which is scheduled for the first half of 2023.