Elio Motors orange trike front three-quarter
  • Image Credit: Copyright 2015 Sebastian Blanco / AOL
Elio Motors orange trike front three-quarter
  • Image Credit: Copyright 2015 Sebastian Blanco / AOL
Elio Motors orange trike front view
  • Image Credit: Copyright 2015 Sebastian Blanco / AOL
Elio Motors orange trike front headlight
  • Image Credit: Copyright 2015 Sebastian Blanco / AOL
Elio Motors orange trike front wheel cover
  • Image Credit: Copyright 2015 Sebastian Blanco / AOL
Elio Motors orange trike interior ipad
  • Image Credit: Copyright 2015 Sebastian Blanco / AOL
Elio Motors orange trike steering wheel
  • Image Credit: Copyright 2015 Sebastian Blanco / AOL
Elio Motors, maker of the three-wheeled, high-MPG vehicle slated for a delayed debut next year, said today that it has locked in a purchase price of $7,300 for holders of non-refundable reservations. The company has taken 56,000 reservations, and says the price applies for non-refundable reservations up to 65,000 vehicles, so there's still room for 9,000 more people to lock in the price. The sticker is higher than the $6,800 price Elio has long advertised, and the company didn't give a reason for the price increase, but did say that sticker price drops to $7,000 for those who make a "binding commitment" to buy a vehicle before Elio hits that 65,000 figure. For now, the fuel-efficiency figure of "up to" 84 miles per gallon touted by Elio still stands.

Despite coming with higher numbers than what Elio has been touting, a price of $7,000 fits with the "about $6,800" amount we've seen over and over. Now that it's given out a number, the automaker is saying that Elio's sticker price is about 40 percent less than an inflation-adjusted $1,699 price of the 1968 Volkswagen Beetle ($11,768 in 2016 dollars). Elio has applied for a $185-million Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing (ATVM) loan from the US Department of Energy for further raise capital as it kicks off production at its Louisiana factory. With 56,000 reservations on the books, the company says it has $350 million in pre-production sales, though that assumes that everyone makes good on their purchases.

Elio, which was founded in 2009, said in June that it was working with The Onion on a politically-oriented marketing campaign in advance of November's presidential election, going as far as calling itself "Purple" in order to straddle the Red and Blue political lines. That followed up Elio's April announcement that it completed its fourth and final design stage of engineering, enabling the company to start testing vehicle prototypes for ride dynamics and safety.

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