Edison2 (Lynchburg, Va.), the winner of the 2010 Progressive Insurance Automotive X PRIZE, recently unveiled its latest Very Light Car (VLC) architecture at The Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Mich. The new VLC prototype embodies lessons learned from the X PRIZE competition and, according to Edison2, also addresses the needs of current passenger car drivers.
The key to the VLC’s structural, dynamic and aerodynamic effectiveness is its modular architecture, says Edison2. Core technologies, including patented in-wheel suspension, have been applied to the new VLC prototype, and an improved, more aerodynamic shape offers better interior space and enhanced aesthetics. According to the company, the new VLC architecture has a promising future in domestic and international markets.
Shown at the unveiling ceremony was a fully functional and drivable bare chassis vehicle with no skin or body panels. This skinless version weighs only 1,089 lb/494 kg with its electric motor and features a floor made with carbon fiber composites. Although previous VLC iterations have featured composite body panels, Edison2 did not divulge details about the materials that would be used in the newest VLC body. Edison2 intends to license the car’s suspension system, but another corporate entity will build the cars. The target price for the finished car is $20,000. The 67-kW electric vehicle reportedly has a top speed of 150 mph/241 kmh.
“We are proud to unveil our new VLC architecture here at The Henry Ford, directly next to our history-making X PRIZE VLC,” says Edison2’s CEO and founder, Oliver Kuttner. “The auto industry has been refining the same architecture for more than 50 years, and Edison2 has created a new path — a new way of building a car that has many environmental and economic benefits. Much of this relies on Edison2’s in-wheel suspension which can be seen on the VLC prototype we will be displaying.”