But buyer beware. Elio's SEC filing outlines a number of obstacles to success, including a list of risks investors need to keep in mind. "We have no revenues, are currently in debt, and expect significant increases in costs and expenses to forestall revenues for the foreseeable future," states the filing. "Even if we are able to successfully develop the Elio, there can be no assurance that we will be commercially successful. If we are to ever achieve profitability, we must have a successful commercial introduction and acceptance of the Elio, which may not occur." Elio adds that it has had $30,696,259 in loan debt as of the end of 2014, has lost $53,793,387 so far, has no final design, no working production facility and finds growing competition from alternative energy vehicles as well as increasingly efficient gas-powered vehicles.
Elio's SEC filing outlines a number of obstacles to success.
In addition, a skeptical public has been wary of a scam from Elio for years, while others simply don't believe in the idea. There is a Facebook page dedicated to the idea that Elio Motors is bilking investors and reservation holders. Elio has taken over 50,000 reservations, many of which are non-refundable, with no set launch date for the vehicle. As the original release date came and went in 2014 (it's currently estimated at late 2016), it's understandable why many are cynical about the prospect of a $6,800 trike capable of 84 mpg ever reaching the market.
Paul Elio paints a rosy picture of his endeavor, as we can see in his press conference at OTC Markets in the video above. An affordable, efficient, crowdfunded vehicle would be welcomed by many, especially when it comes to solving mobility problems for people who can't afford a traditional car. It also appears that Elio Motors is aware of its own risk profile (though it certainly isn't shouting about it to potential investors). Still, one need only scroll as far as the video's comments section to find the enthusiasm of reservation holders met with cries of dissent.