The systems in electric vehicles can sometimes struggle in cold conditions, but green-minded drivers on Japan's northern island of Hokkaido could eventually have an EV perfectly suited to the area's snowy climate. According to The Japan Times, eight companies from the region are working together to create the model, but the process is still in the early stages.

So far, the companies have a tiny, one-person EV prototype, but it at least shows what they are trying to do. During normal driving, the vehicle has rear-wheel drive, if it loses traction, then an all-wheel drive system can kick in. The interior will also feature extra insulation to keep in the heat.

Unfortunately, other details about what makes this EV special are fairly scant. The vehicle's only online presence seems to be a Japanese Facebook page, and the translation of this work is the Hokkaido EV Research and Development Utilization Project. There are also some images of the prototype's assembly there and a sketch of the next iteration, which looks much sleeker. Check out the video below to see to the little buggy on a snowy road. It's not pretty, but clearly drives. Maybe this group can eventually create the ultimate winter-weather EV.

テスト走行!無事終了です。ほっと一息ですが、モーターショー本番まで、まだまだ調整が山積み。。もうひと頑張りです。

Posted by 北海道ev研究開発・利活用プロジェクト on Friday, January 15, 2016

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