French car maker Renault has unveiled a low-cost electric car for British drivers.
Trouble is, the £6,690 ($10,876) car doesn’t come with a few basic essentials. Like a battery. Or doors.
Called Twizy, the miniature automobile carries a driver and one passenger for as much as 60 miles before it needs a recharge. Waterproof coats are not included.
Buying the Twizy alone won’t get you far, because the battery costs extra. You have to rent one of those, for an extra £40 ($65) per month.
In all seriousness, this vehicle barely qualifies as a car. It’s more like a quadbike with a roof. In fact, that’s what it’s legally classed as, and how insurance companies will treat it.
And while the target market (hip single city types with no kids and easy access to parking) is fairly self-limiting, the Twizy is just one of many new ideas for electric cars. And we’re only going to be seeing more of them in the coming years, as gas prices continue to skyrocket.
As with any big change that affects almost everybody, momentum is key to success. Electric cars need an infrastructure of charging points and battery swap stations, and all that takes time to build.
But public recharging points are already appearing on some UK streets. If the car makers want to sell their new electric car concepts (no matter how small or outlandish they might be), they have to show willing and invest in the infrastructure to back them up.
Autocar.co.uk’s Matt Saunders took the Twizy for a test drive and called it a real breath of fresh air. We’ll have to wait and see if the city hipsters of London agree with him.
(Via The Register)