New £5k solar-powered Squad Solar City Car design updated
Dutch EV start-up Squad-Mobility has updated the design of its solar-electric quadricycle – the Solar City Car. Following feedback from pre-order customers, the Squad has been reconfigured to allow for a few creature comforts, while retaining its ultra-low price tag.
Removable doors and air-conditioning are both now available as optional extras. Customers can choose from either half doors, without window glass, or lockable doors which fully enclose the cabin.
Full doors add an extra €1,000 (around £890) to the Squad’s base-price, while the half doors cost an extra €500 (around £450). Air-conditioning is only available with the enclosed doors – and adds an additional €2,500 (roughly £2,200) to the quadricycle’s entry-price.
The Solar City Car is available to order now, for both UK and European customers. The base-model – which features neither doors nor air-conditioning – is priced at €5,750 (roughly £5,100) excluding VAT. First deliveries for both markets are due in the final quarter of 2021.
The Squad was designed primarily for urban use, with the brand’s CEO Robert Hoevers claiming its solar roof can recover up to 9,000km (roughly 5,500 miles) of range per year in a sunny country. This equates to around 30km (19 miles) or one hour of city driving per day for 300 days of the year.
On a full charge, the Squad’s 4kWh battery pack provides a maximum range of 62 miles – and, like a conventional electric car, it can also be charged using a household socket. The entry-level variant will have a maximum speed of 45km/h (28mph) – although the company plans to offer a faster 80km/h (50mph) model should demand be met.
Like the Renault Twizy, the Squad is tiny. It has a space claim of just two square metres, measuring just two metres long, one metre wider and 1.6 metres tall. As such, four Squads can be parked crossways in one standard parking space – and, due to its dinky dimensions, buyers won’t need to pay congestion charges or road tax.
The Squad offers space for two adult passengers, with a further two jumper seats over the rear axle for children up to 1.25 metres tall. Its styling is intentionally minimalistic, featuring only the bare minimum amount of body work to keep the worst of the weather at bay.
Chris Klok, Squad Mobility’s Chief of Design, said: “The goal was to develop a distinctive, youthful, accessible and fresh design for this new category and to disrupt the car archetype of people moving about in their own little box. We want to make this a more social, interactive experience where the passengers feel included in their urban environment, while still enjoying the comfort of protection from weather and sun.”
Those outside the EU can also register interest, with Squad Mobility offering a €5 (around £4.50) refundable deposit for prospective buyers. However, the company is yet to set production and delivery dates for markets outside the EU, stating both will be prioritised according to market demand.
What do you make of the Squad? Let us know in the comments section below…
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