• Apr 11th 2007 at 8:05AM
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Click on the image for a gallery of high-res renderings of the the Velozzi car

Team Velozzi is one of the teams that is planning to compete for the Automotive X-Prize. They are an R&D group that's focusing on developing alternative fuel vehicles. Assuming they don't change direction they will be competing in the class for two seat or more vehicles, with a car that currently looks like it could have come from a design studio in a certain region of Northern Italy. The current specs list dual AC motors and lithium ion batteries. They also show a Weismann F1 gearbox although that should probably be unnecessary. Since one of the criteria that the X-Prize judges will be looking at is the business model and productibility of the vehicle, it will be interesting to see if Velozzi changes their design direction away from what appears to be a two seat super-car to something more mainstream, but still battery powered.

[Source: Team Velozzi]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 8 Months Ago
      And so it starts. Lovely design! But I agree the focus should be on cost effectiveness. The rules are a little vague:

      "Vehicle cost at a production rate of 10,000 units per year must be within levels that the market is likely to bear"

      I can't quite see production volumes of 10,000 of these badboys a year. Beatuiful though.
      • 8 Months Ago
      Our company is developing a two seat, three wheeled vehicle for the alternative class that will be priced starting at $13,500 or so.
      • 8 Months Ago
      >> 5. Yes, How about a car that can seat four (car pools), can go 0-60 in 7-8 seconds, top out at 95 mph for around $25-35,000. If you want to save the planet it's going to take millions of converts verses a couple thousand.

      Comment for Steven. Let's stop dreaming about cars that can be 100% efficient and weigh practically nothing and carry 4 people getting huge performance and carrying four people. Yes you want a car that can do it all, but that's a fantasy. Cars are only 10% efficient converting 100% energy with zero heat and brake inefficiency, meaning in a perfect world which doesn't exist. So what we have in reality is a 2000lb or more car carrying a single 200lb or less person most of the time. How many times do you drive alone. So that's 10% of the weight being the driver. We need to think radicallly to get 100MPG, meaning 12 horsepower or something like that to sustain highway speeds. That's not going to give you performance, although perhaps you can store the horsepower in something if your looking for a temporary performance boost for an occasional drag race. (Compressed gas, a flywheel, etc.) Is that practical? You can scale and perhaps have an electric motor put out huge HP for a drag, but typically put out much less for average, perhaps, but that would be it. And you'd have to have all the batteries. You can have a battery dragster, or a superefficient light car, or you can have a 4 passenger car. You can have a two seater which is more efficient. There are other options out there, but none will meet your criteria, (a VETTE for four poeple that get's 100MPG). If it was "easy" to do, Honda would have done it by now. Look at even "scooters" and most of them, which weight about 300lbs or less, get 60, 70 or 80MPG. Your thinking a cheap affordable car can do the same thing is a dream. If it's light enough to perform. (a four person recumbent bike with battery power and a flaring and waterproof shell. Well that's not safe and can't hit the top speed, but it could perhaps get 150MPG.

      Many people are going to have to think a bit more before dreaming about what magic these teams can provide. We've had 100 or more years to get efficient and there's a reason grounded in basic physics that it hasn't happened. Best thing the Xprize could do would probably be to spawn 3 wheel motorcycle performance/econo vehicles, that most single (drive to work) owners could buy which would work in the cold weather. If we had those, we'd have a real replacement for the "scooter" mentality of warm weather nations of Europe. I live in Michigan and your not going to drive a scooter to work in the snow.
      • 8 Months Ago
      Agreed on the price point. I've been watching these cars come out and while I'm excited to see that they're being developed, it's frustrating when you catch a glimpse of the price tag. The real winner of this competition would be the one who could make something that looked good and could be used as a commuter car for the average consumer and then was the first company to sell thousands of units to the public.
      • 8 Months Ago
      Yes, How about a car that can seat four (car pools), can go 0-60 in 7-8 seconds, top out at 95 mph for around $25-35,000. If you want to save the planet it's going to take millions of converts verses a couple thousand.
      • 8 Months Ago
      I would hope to see more affordable cars come out of this X-Prize. Especially an electric car. Does the X-Prize put any limits on the cost of the car I wonder. I'll have to take a closer look at the rules.
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