I’ve been covering cars long enough to know that every car design is loved by some people and hated by others. “Car gurus” have a tendency to act as if their design opinions are objective facts (they aren’t). My guess is that said car gurus would say the Applus iShare electric car is on the bottom end of an attractiveness chart, but I’m sure the funky design also appeals to some people. Check it out in the video above and feel free to chime in with your own opinion.
“Like the Volar-E and E-Born3 concepts before it, the new iShare EV from Applus IDIADA makes you stop and look twice. Looking like the strange child of a Smart Fortwo and a flat-nose semi tractor, the iShare is a purpose-designed little car (technically, a heavy quadricycle) that Applus has prepped for carsharing duty in European cities. There are no key holes in the doors, but the designers didn’t forget them. Instead, they rethought how a car like this should be locked and unlocked,” Sebastion Blanco of Autoblog Green writes.
The iShare’s special purpose is for active duty in carsharing programs (European carsharing programs, to be specific). As part of that, there’s aren’t conventional keyholes in the doors or even inside the car at all. Rather, the car is unlocked by scanning a barcode on your smartphone or tablet, and the car is started using a PIN code.
On to some of the specs: “The concept was designed for Europe, where it would be classified as a heavy quadricycle. That means that it has a 15-kW motor (the largest allowed) with a peak torque rating of 140 nM as well as a 7-kWh lithium-ion battery. It weighs just 530 kilograms (1,168 pounds). The combination is good for an estimated 100 kilometers (62 miles) of range and a top speed of 80 kilometers per hour (50 miles per hour). Based on carsharing use in the city, 62 miles should be enough for seven or eight drivers between trips to a charging station, Satué said. When it does need more juice, the onboard 6-kW charger and Euro-spec Mennekes connector will fill up the pack in about 70 minutes.”
Cost? $8,000 to $12,000 … available to carsharing companies only.
Pretty interesting, imho. I could see the car doing quite well with its specs, cost, and many features specifically designed for carsharing service. Aside from the above, that also includes all-plastic interiors that are easier to clean — carsharing users are not always so respectful of their shared property — and can be easily replaced if need be. Of course, being a small and efficient electric vehicle, the fuel costs will be minimal, better than pretty much everything else a person can drive.
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