If you think the fact that Elio Motors has taken 15,000 reservations for its high-MPG three-wheeler is something to scoff at, well, consider the fact that Honda sold less than 21,000 of its hybrids, plug-in hybrids and electric vehicles combined last year. But, if you think that the company's claim that the trike is cleaner than a year's worth of farts from a cow? Well, go ahead and scoff.

The vehicle, which is set to debut next year, has upped its reservation count to more than 15,000 units from about 10,000 as of late February and from about 6,300 as of the end of 2013. The three-wheeler is priced at $6,800 and gets 84 miles per gallon and prospective buyers need to put down a $100 non-refundable deposit to get on the list. More intriguingly, Elio says that 20,000 miles of driving will produce fewer greenhouse gases than the methane produced by the farts and burps from a cow over the course of a year. Granted, an Elio probably doesn't taste too good if you grind it up and cook it, but that's a different story.

Elio has said the three-wheeler will be engineered well enough to receive a five-star crash-test rating, while power windows and door locks as well as airbags and a radio will all be included in the little-bitty vehicle. Check out Elio's press release about cow farts below. Have we seen everything now?
Show full PR text
Elio Motors: More Environmentally Friendly than a Cow's What?

Enclosed three-wheeled vehicle to launch in 2015, will get 84 mpg, trap less CO2 than a year's worth of one cow's farts

Yes, we said it. Elio Motors is more environmentally friendly than cow farts.

With Earth Day (April 22) approaching, Elio Motors, Inc., CEO Paul Elio challenged his team to come up with unique ways to show the environmental impact of the company's enclosed three-wheeled vehicle. Set to launch in 2015, the vehicle will sell for $6,800 and get an astounding 84 miles per gallon.

Of course, the team came up with some compelling information. If the company reaches its sales targets, it will save American drivers 8 million gallons of fuel a year. It will reduce CO2 emissions by 160 million pounds. It could cut the average consumer's annual fuel bill by approximately $1,500.

But, one thing caught Mr. Elio's eye. Elio Motors vehicle will be more environmentally friendly than a year's worth of one cow's farts. Here's the science:

One cow produces 242 lbs of methane a year through burps and flatulence. Methane traps 20 times more heat than CO2 over a 100-year period. (SOURCE: Get Green Living) In a year, the average cow will emit 4,840 lbs of CO2 equivalent greenhouses gases.
Elio Motors vehicle, driven 20,000 miles, will only emit only 4,500 lbs of CO2. So... the Elio is more environmentally friendly than cow farts.
"I'll admit, it's not the most conventional measure for environmental efficiency," Elio said of the cow comparison. "But, when you realize that we are more environmentally friendly than something found in nature every day, we are clearly on the right path. The internal combustion engine is going to be part of the transportation industry for many years into the future. The key will be for companies such as Elio Motors to come up with revolutionary vehicle designs to use existing technology in a more Earth-friendly way."

Mr. Elio concedes that there are other futuristic technologies such as electric vehicles and hydrogen propulsion that will eventually reduce emissions even further.

But, consumer demand and infrastructure needed to support these technologies might keep them from the mainstream for another 20 years. In the meantime, he sees Elio Motors vehicle as an important bridge to the future – an affordable, efficient vehicle that meets consumer demand and can hit the road right away.

In fact, Mr. Elio has his own "Cash for Clunkers" plan, aimed at getting rid of some of the 95 million "clunkers" on America's highways today. Most people drive a low-mileage, low-price clunker because they don't believe they have any other option. With a vehicle from Elio Motors, clunker owners can get a new vehicle for a low price that is under warranty, inexpensive to ensure and provides significant fuel savings.

"Many people simply don't believe they can afford a new vehicle," Elio said. "But, we are providing a transportation option that can get literally thousands of people into a new vehicle who couldn't afford one before. A good outcome from this will be getting a lot of inefficient, gas guzzling vehicles off the road."
Initial customer enthusiasm for Elio Motors is high, as more than 14,000 people have made reservations for the vehicle. The company already has more than 100,000 fans on Facebook and is averaging more than 250,000 unique visitors per month to its web site this year.

About Elio Motors: Founded by car enthusiast Paul Elio in 2008, Elio Motors Inc. represents a revolutionary approach to manufacturing an ultra-high-mileage vehicle. The 3-wheeled Elio will attain a highway mileage rating of 84 mpg while providing the comfort of amenities such as power windows, power door lock and air conditioning, accompanied by the safety of multiple air bags and an aerodynamic, enclosed vehicle body. Elio's first manufacturing site will be in Shreveport, La., with plans for the first production vehicle to roll off the assembly line in 2015 and significant production, sales and distribution during the next two years. For more information, visit www.eliomotors.com or www.facebook.com/ElioMotors.


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  • 41 Comments
      Spec
      • 7 Months Ago
      Why would you want a gas car like this. The constant refrain with electric cars is "bu bu but what about when I want to drive to the ski hill on the weekend?" Are you gonna drive to the ski hill in this?
        2 wheeled menace
        • 7 Months Ago
        @Spec
        84mpg and cheap enough that almost anyone could own one.. you really don't get the appeal? Surely someone will come up with some kind of roof rack in time. Or an easy way to modify an existing cheap one to fit.
      2 wheeled menace
      • 7 Months Ago
      Shut up and take my money! ( after you get the car into production anyways )
        Dave
        • 7 Months Ago
        @2 wheeled menace
        I'll give them a model year or two to work out the kinks.
      Dan Sturges
      • 7 Months Ago
      Vaporwheels. (Whent he price is $11K or more, I will believe it)
      chuckccole
      • 7 Months Ago
      So they haven't really engineered it yet? Did anyone do the math and realize they just borrowed $150k from customers that got nothing? And it cost them nothing?
        chuckccole
        • 7 Months Ago
        @chuckccole
        I even suck at typing and math. It's $1.5m.
          • 7 Months Ago
          @chuckccole
          There's risk involved in a non-refundable reservation system. However, there's also reward. I reserved because I'm not afraid of a little risk to support a venture that I'm excited about. Hopefully others feel the same way, but I can understand if they'd rather see a finished product or a sure thing first.
      TIMMAH!
      • 7 Months Ago
      Okay, great. Now let's see some steps towards actual production. Zap me once, Aptera me twice, I won't be Elio'd again...
        k3ith
        • 7 Months Ago
        @TIMMAH!
        I too am skeptical of them, but other articles have indicated that they are closing in on production. At this point I'm going to assume they'll make a few thousand of them before missing so many projections that they go under leaving the early buyers with vehicles they can't get repaired, can't find parts for, and whose value has dropped to next to nothing. I hope I'm wrong.
      Camaroman101
      • 6 Months Ago
      i was interested in one, till i heard they still only have 1/4th of the money they actually need. vaporware indeed
      Joeviocoe
      • 7 Months Ago
      --"Elio has said the three-wheeler will be engineered well enough to receive a five-star crash-test rating" But since it is a 3-wheeler, it will never actually be subjected to an official crash test. This is classified as a bike, and exempt from crash testing.
        Dave
        • 7 Months Ago
        @Joeviocoe
        If Elio gives them the cars (trikes...whatever) I'm sure the IIHS (Insurance Institute for Highway Safety) will test it. Even if it isn't a car, insurers will need to know how much to charge for insurance.
        BipDBo
        • 7 Months Ago
        @Joeviocoe
        They should stand behind their claim and test it.
          • 7 Months Ago
          @BipDBo
          Close to the beginning of this summer they plan to come out with the final prototype. They will then have roughly 20 of the final autocycles made by mid fall and will conduct the crash testing on the majority of them. Like Joeviocoe said, it is not required to have crash testing done since it is not actually a car, but Elio Motors wants to prove just how safe and efficient their creation really is. :)
      Jeff Gilleran
      • 7 Months Ago
      This is not the final prototype. Currently, the P4, (shown here) is getting close to the final stage of build. The P5 should be coming out fairly soon, with a few minor changes. Rear headroom is being increased slightly from snippets i've read on the net. The official engine should also be installed, and i'm guessing final safety testing, and final EPA figures as well. Really looking forward to this "Autocycle".
      Mike
      • 7 Months Ago
      I ordered one and I very happy to do so. I drive 40 miles a day.. id rather have this then a car loaded with batteries.
        Ziv
        • 7 Months Ago
        @Mike
        jeff, I would like one with batteries instead of a fuel tank, too, but the KISS principle is a good one in the case of a startup like this.
        jeff
        • 7 Months Ago
        @Mike
        Why not have one like this with batteries?
      danfred311
      • 8 Months Ago
      I'm certainly not scoffing, I'm very surprised if that number is true. Granted the price is low and the driving cheap but I hadn't imagined that many paying attention while at the same time being willing to drive such an unconventional vehicle. That's Tesla numbers of vehicles. Steve Fambro, you messed up, bro : ) and it might not be too late to do it right.
        • 7 Months Ago
        @danfred311
        danfred311, I sure did mess up. I hired a lying, psychopathic CEO and he brought in his incompetent 'team'.
          danfred311
          • 7 Months Ago
          I was mostly teasing :) I thought it was out of your hands, that investors made the decision?
          danfred311
          • 7 Months Ago
          I was mostly teasing :) I thought it was out of your hands, that investors made the decision?
      Hello PDavan7
      • 7 Months Ago
      I like the T-Rex design from Campagna, except it's an over priced toy with a roll cage. The Elio has more a car comforts, it just lacks curb appeal. When they build Pretty, I'll consider it. Or just buy a Honda civic.
      jebibudala
      • 8 Months Ago
      I'll pay cash in full when they are released. I see no reason to throw down a $100 non-refundable deposit, which at 15,000 people only equates to 1.5 mil..... , hardly a drop in the bucket of what's needed to get the car into production. I really really really really hope this succeeds. I'd like an orange or green one parked between my other two cars in my driveway.
        • 7 Months Ago
        @jebibudala
        You can always put in a $100 refundable deposit. That will at least give you a place in line. If people don't make a reservation of any amount, they will have to wait for the second year of production once the reservations have been fulfilled to get their hands on one.
          k3ith
          • 7 Months Ago
          Until recently they didn't give the option of refundable deposits which probably made a lot of people assume that this was vaporware (it certainly made me suspicious). I wouldn't want to get one the first year till they've worked out the inevitable kinks anyway. If they're still around after a year I'll probably be buying one.
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