I’ve never thought a solar powered vehicle could be the answer to motoring in Manchester, but after the summer we’ve been having maybe an eco-car may well be the future. Designed by Munich based start up, Sono, this compact hatchback plastered with 330 solar cells could solve battery-based range anxiety by harnessing the sun’s energy to recharge.
The Sion comes in two flavours with ranges of either 120km or 250km but the viSono system promises to supplement that by up to 30km per day using solar energy which could be enough to cover many drivers’ commutes in total, making refuelling a thing of the past.
Battery tech dubbed biSono will allow the car to charge and run other devices, including other Sions, or for example if on a camping trip.
The vehicle’s quirky design owes it shape to maximising both aerodynamics and surface area to increase efficiency and utilize as much of the sun’s energy as possible. The body is constructed from a rust-proof and scratch-resistant polycarbonate to reduce weight.
Inside the Sion has a ‘no frills’ feel but there’s a 10 inch infotainment system offering all the latest driver aids and connectivity .
The strangest feature of the dash is cavity filled with living moss. I have to admit to checking the calendar wasn’t on April when reading this but apparently it filters harmful dust particles from the air. Sono have also helpfully confirmed that ‘you do not have to water it.
When it comes to maintenance the Sion will have an open source manual and the option to order parts online directly from Sono. The so called reSono system aims to keep costs low for dealers and motorists.
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