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Ok, don't have it yet, pre-ordered with a delivery sometime between 2023-24.

I love my Slingshot, but the tech they are putting into the Aptera is amazing. All electric, all wheel drive, integrated solar panels, liquid cooling which is routed thru the skin of the vehicle so no radiator, 0-60 in 3.5 seconds. Fit and trim that puts the Sling to shame, composite and carbon fiber construction as opposed to cheap plastic. And as I get older (69 now...) creature comforts become a little more important, like A/C and heater. If you drive less than 40 miles a day the integrated solar panels will replace the energy used, so no need to plug in to recharge (yes, subject to numerous conditions...). With the maximum battery pack, the range is claimed to be 1000 miles. I opted for the 40kwh battery pack, so about 400 miles. Have to admit, with fuel prices still going up, the thought of "free" driving is very appealing. One video I saw alluded to the ability to plug in your own solar panel to charge, so I can be parked securely in the garage and still get the sun's charge benefit (I already have solar panels and solar chargers available).

Everytime I see a new YouTube video from either Aptera or the Aptera Owner's Group, there is something to raise an eyebrow, new tech, fastidious testing and integration, new options.... Really looking forward to the final production version due out later this year.

And the cost is comparable to the Slingshot. Mine is just under $31K.
 
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Ok, don't have it yet, pre-ordered with a delivery sometime between 2023-24.

I love my Slingshot, but the tech they are putting into the Aptera is amazing. All electric, all wheel drive, integrated solar panels, liquid cooling which is routed thru the skin of the vehicle so no radiator, 0-60 in 3.5 seconds. Fit and trim that puts the Sling to shame, composite and carbon fiber construction as opposed to cheap plastic. And as I get older (69 now...) creature comforts become a little more important, like A/C and heater. If you drive less than 40 miles a day the integrated solar panels will replace the energy used, so no need to plug in to recharge (yes, subject to numerous conditions...). With the maximum battery pack, the range is claimed to be 1000 miles. I opted for the 40kwh battery pack, so about 400 miles. Have to admit, with fuel prices still going up, the thought of "free" driving is very appealing. One video I saw alluded to the ability to plug in your own solar panel to charge, so I can be parked securely in the garage and still get the sun's charge benefit (I already have solar panels and solar chargers available).

Everytime I see a new YouTube video from either Aptera or the Aptera Owner's Group, there is something to raise an eyebrow, new tech, fastidious testing and integration, new options.... Really looking forward to the final production version due out later this year.

And the cost is comparable to the Slingshot. Mine is just under $31K.
Jay Leno did a show on one. There seems to be a delay on production
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Ok, don't have it yet, pre-ordered with a delivery sometime between 2023-24.
1st line of my OP.... I can wait. Sometimes new tech takes a while. I waited almost a year to get the Starlink satellite internet.

Worst case, I loose $100 deposit.

Best case, I have an awesome new ride.
 

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Did a wee bit of research, and it looks like it's not produced yet? If that is so, you didn't buy a car you invested in the possibility that you might wind up with a car.

I'm sorry I don't think you'll see the car or your money. The failure rate for these types of vehicles is very, very high.
The price seems too enticing, and not equivalent for similar vehicles. For example: A base sling $20,799 which is in line with an economy car. A base Chevy Volt is $34,700 which is about $3k more expensive than your vehicle and the Slingshot has been in production for about 7 years and used an off the shelf motor, your vehicle is all new.

Another example of this type of failure is the Elio. Great concept, 3 wheels, 900cc engine and they went so far as to establish service centers with Pep Boys. According to their marketing most of their components were off the shelf to keep costs down. Took deposits in 2013 and has promised to start production later this year...

The one success story I know is the Acrimoto FUV (fun utility vehicle) which start at about $18,000 and is basically a bigger golf cart (looks fun AF).

I hope I'm wrong.
 

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I've been in the vehicle industry for some time and have seen a lot of ideas come and go. Until Polaris bought what was left of Indian you wouldn't believe how many times that company was resuscitated and died another death. Polaris already made motorcycles, however they didn't make money off making motorcycles, which is why they bought Indian. They needed to make enough motorcycles to make making motorcycles profitable--and that's just a motorcycle, not a large vehicle with seats. Even that idea didn't work out and they had to change it from "vintage" to "futuristic" bikes.

An even higher-risk venture is a bigger concept vehicle like the Slingshot. Once again, Polaris did make similar off-road vehicles with seats, which was married with other automotive parts and became a prototype Slingshot. However, the production cost compared to projected sales volume was still too high so quite a few parts were redesigned to be made in China for much less money...however that also lead to parts shortages--never discount how important parts availability is.

That brings up other three-wheelers like the Elio which has been in the works since 2009 and they've yet to produce gas powered vehicles, much less electric. They simply don't have enough money to make it happen, at least according to their business plan. If they had ten times as many big investors or different business model, maybe, but that company seems pretty much dead. If it was feasible my guess is Elon Musk would have bought the company and made it happen-and that still could happen-but I haven't seen one Tweet about it so for now it's not happening.

Which brings us to Aptera... It is not "amazing," it is a concept. Don't get me wrong, I'd love it to be amazing (and would own one), but it simply cannot be. Other than Tesla no electric car concept from a startup has hit any of the projected estimates for speed, range, cost, and amenities. Regarding fit and trim, it's going to be hard to get close to the Slingshot's initial quality, much less beat it. Solar, well, take that as a pipe-dream; if you load up on batteries and solar panels in ideal conditions you "could get up to 40 miles of solar charge per day," which if history serves will be 10 to 20 miles for most people in southern states, 5 to 15 for six months in northern states and 2 to 10 the rest of the year. Most people have no concept of how heat from solar panels on the dash will reek havoc with the electronics.

If the Slingshot has taught the general public anything, it might be that concept vehicles like the Aptera are best owned by people with electrical and mechanical knowledge, a good set of tools, time, and patience. (and money, don't forget money) Personally, I'd love to own one and hope the company makes it, and can continue being successful. I'm certain we'll eventually see a battery-powered vehicle styled like the Aptera, but if you haven't noticed there's a grave "increasing cost" issue with lithium batteries, plus a scalability issue that requires different battery technology to become mainstream before electric vehicles can be manufactured on a much larger scale.

There's also a weight issue: let's not discount Polaris was the only company to get an exception, then failed to meet that and was granted a second more lenient exception. Batteries and motors and seats and automotive glass aren't light. Aptera has in summary quietly admitted the vehicle cannot carry the 1,000 mile battery--it's too heavy and will require a complete re-design; it would only be legal if the weight classification for auto-cycle were changed. Even the 600 mile concept vehicle is is pushing the limits. Concept companies also tend to greatly underestimate charge times. Tesla liquid-cools the batteries and somehow they expect to charge in 1/4 the time of Tesla (who designed their own cells and chemistry)--not going to happen.

Pricing...I can't see that happening. Arcimoto's similar FUV with a 100 mile range at slower city speeds is $22,400. That comparatively puts an Aptera 250 mile range base vehicle between $38,000 and $42,000. And on the range topic, that estimate is for one thin person, no heat or A/C or stereo on flat roads; given it's a very light power-miser vehicle one could estimate reducing the range 25%-50%, so a 400 concept-mile vehicle is probably, with hills and heat and two people listening to music, going to have a usable range of 75 to 150 miles with new-ish batteries at 45 to 52 mph.

With all those "practical opinions," I think that's a pretty good deal if they can reach production quantities of 1,500 yearly. Seriously. Skip the factory and hand-build them, because 1,500 is a lofty goal as-is. They don't have the private test-course Polaris has, lots of things will need revision and it's best to have a "light" investment at this point--both in equipment and vehicles on the road. (Remember Polaris traction-control issues?) IF Aptera survives a year (and with all the technology in it that'll be a challenge), set the next-year's goal at 3,000--that'll allow enough revenue to pay the bills at a small location and partner with other companies that will help them produce 7,500 vehicles years three and four. Slow, consistent, sustainable growth. If they can hit 10,000 vehicles years 5-7 that would be awesome and give them a launching point for doubling production (though others in the industry would laugh and say this is a long-shot, which it is).

And with that said, now you know why Elio won't reach production--they're too invested in an unrealistic dream. Hopefully Aptera resets their goals now, I'd love to see them succeed.
 

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I've been in the vehicle industry for some time and have seen a lot of ideas come and go. Until Polaris bought what was left of Indian you wouldn't believe how many times that company was resuscitated and died another death. Polaris already made motorcycles, however they didn't make money off making motorcycles, which is why they bought Indian. They needed to make enough motorcycles to make making motorcycles profitable--and that's just a motorcycle, not a large vehicle with seats. Even that idea didn't work out and they had to change it from "vintage" to "futuristic" bikes.

An even higher-risk venture is a bigger concept vehicle like the Slingshot. Once again, Polaris did make similar off-road vehicles with seats, which was married with other automotive parts and became a prototype Slingshot. However, the production cost compared to projected sales volume was still too high so quite a few parts were redesigned to be made in China for much less money...however that also lead to parts shortages--never discount how important parts availability is.

That brings up other three-wheelers like the Elio which has been in the works since 2009 and they've yet to produce gas powered vehicles, much less electric. They simply don't have enough money to make it happen, at least according to their business plan. If they had ten times as many big investors or different business model, maybe, but that company seems pretty much dead. If it was feasible my guess is Elon Musk would have bought the company and made it happen-and that still could happen-but I haven't seen one Tweet about it so for now it's not happening.

Which brings us to Aptera... It is not "amazing," it is a concept. Don't get me wrong, I'd love it to be amazing (and would own one), but it simply cannot be. Other than Tesla no electric car concept from a startup has hit any of the projected estimates for speed, range, cost, and amenities. Regarding fit and trim, it's going to be hard to get close to the Slingshot's initial quality, much less beat it. Solar, well, take that as a pipe-dream; if you load up on batteries and solar panels in ideal conditions you "could get up to 40 miles of solar charge per day," which if history serves will be 10 to 20 miles for most people in southern states, 5 to 15 for six months in northern states and 2 to 10 the rest of the year. Most people have no concept of how heat from solar panels on the dash will reek havoc with the electronics.

If the Slingshot has taught the general public anything, it might be that concept vehicles like the Aptera are best owned by people with electrical and mechanical knowledge, a good set of tools, time, and patience. (and money, don't forget money) Personally, I'd love to own one and hope the company makes it, and can continue being successful. I'm certain we'll eventually see a battery-powered vehicle styled like the Aptera, but if you haven't noticed there's a grave "increasing cost" issue with lithium batteries, plus a scalability issue that requires different battery technology to become mainstream before electric vehicles can be manufactured on a much larger scale.

There's also a weight issue: let's not discount Polaris was the only company to get an exception, then failed to meet that and was granted a second more lenient exception. Batteries and motors and seats and automotive glass aren't light. Aptera has in summary quietly admitted the vehicle cannot carry the 1,000 mile battery--it's too heavy and will require a complete re-design; it would only be legal if the weight classification for auto-cycle were changed. Even the 600 mile concept vehicle is is pushing the limits. Concept companies also tend to greatly underestimate charge times. Tesla liquid-cools the batteries and somehow they expect to charge in 1/4 the time of Tesla (who designed their own cells and chemistry)--not going to happen.

Pricing...I can't see that happening. Arcimoto's similar FUV with a 100 mile range at slower city speeds is $22,400. That comparatively puts an Aptera 250 mile range base vehicle between $38,000 and $42,000. And on the range topic, that estimate is for one thin person, no heat or A/C or stereo on flat roads; given it's a very light power-miser vehicle one could estimate reducing the range 25%-50%, so a 400 concept-mile vehicle is probably, with hills and heat and two people listening to music, going to have a usable range of 75 to 150 miles with new-ish batteries at 45 to 52 mph.

With all those "practical opinions," I think that's a pretty good deal if they can reach production quantities of 1,500 yearly. Seriously. Skip the factory and hand-build them, because 1,500 is a lofty goal as-is. They don't have the private test-course Polaris has, lots of things will need revision and it's best to have a "light" investment at this point--both in equipment and vehicles on the road. (Remember Polaris traction-control issues?) IF Aptera survives a year (and with all the technology in it that'll be a challenge), set the next-year's goal at 3,000--that'll allow enough revenue to pay the bills at a small location and partner with other companies that will help them produce 7,500 vehicles years three and four. Slow, consistent, sustainable growth. If they can hit 10,000 vehicles years 5-7 that would be awesome and give them a launching point for doubling production (though others in the industry would laugh and say this is a long-shot, which it is).

And with that said, now you know why Elio won't reach production--they're too invested in an unrealistic dream. Hopefully Aptera resets their goals now, I'd love to see them succeed.
I'd like to see your thoughts on Tesla ... 20 yrs ago.
 

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I'd like to see your thoughts on Tesla ... 20 yrs ago.
Sounds like another Elio which promised so much at a $7500 price, but like many other start-up car companies never delivered one single car after taking hundreds of deposits. Piece of advice; it it isn't ready for now delivery, save your money.
Slingshots are here now, get one.
 

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I'd like to see your thoughts on Tesla ... 20 yrs ago.
Hopefully @Rider doesn't mind us going off-topic, if so these posts can be moved out of this thread to a new one.

I should preface this with Tesla zealots are probably going to be outraged by this "ICE-brained hate mongering," and gas guys are probably going to take issue with my "soft-pedaling of gocarts powered by C-cells," in which case I'll have to move this to another thread. So I'll ask that if someone has a critical opinion they keep it cordial, back it up with why they take that stance and hopefully some facts and links to related articles.

I did not think Tesla would make such a fast, high-mileage car, both in range and longevity. What they did do is take Elon Musk's philosophy of (loosely quoted): "If you introduce a new product into an existing market it cannot be marginally better, it has to be exceptional" to the extreme. It is a feat of engineering due mostly to Elon's desire to not fail, for which great recognition should be afforded.

At the same time, many components are not built well and quality is lacking (rustproofing, rear seat longevity, the Linux log problem to name a few). Against his philosophy of things being user-serviceable (unless I'm mistakenly mis-attributing or misunderstanding his position), the car is not user-serviceable. (This is more a matter of opinion, which is subjective, and only addressing parts of the whole product, not the product in its entirety.)

I also calculated the car to have a Total Cost Of Ownership at three times a comparably equipped gasoline powered car, given a lifespan of 300,000 miles. That figure has decreased over time and seemingly dropped to two times the cost of a comparable gas-powered vehicle in the last few years, which is very good.

I think we should also understand how his company "went under" many times, but the U.S. government bailed it out repeatedly, which is anti-competitive and technically highly illegal, yet the government has done that repeatedly "in the interest of the public" in the automotive and other markets. Whether you believe that is good or bad is subjective, however I'm focused on the company and value and timing of the technology, not politics.

What is not good is Tesla is using "stolen" (if you want to use that term) software illegally to run every computer-controlled aspect of their vehicles.

I think the current automotive market, when considering the number of vehicles, is too large to sustain 100% electric vehicles, which is the 2035 regulatory plan in several countries. I base this on the amount of lithium able to be mined, the amount of "slave" labor currently employed to mine the lithium, trade prices and the current global economy, and current battery technology advancements. I recognize a new, undiscovered technology could change that, but governments are currently betting if they force everyone to buy electric cars the proposed existing technology will become affordable; to me that's overly-optimistic, economy-of-scale doesn't always apply in ways we optimistically imagine them, especially when it comes to difficult things.

Rolling that up, Tesla would not exist except for the stars aligning in its favor, which is why I would encourage Aptera to proceed with caution. Recently, Tesla, after China changed its EV regulations in an effort to take over Tesla facilities, almost folded, yet after it sustained that blow managed to finally "become profitable," which it would not be if we count in the taxpayer subsidies it and EV buyers received, so "profitable" is a bit of a loaded position to take. Yet Aptera does have a unique product vastly different from what is in the market, and since Polaris won the costly legal and legislative battles for auto-cycles to be legal much of Aptera's road is already paved.

The road is not easy though, Tesla's Cybertruck (which I believe was designed in Minecraft) still hasn't made it to production. Ford somehow beat Tesla to market with Ford's Lightning. I have a feeling with all the battles to stay solvent Tesla couldn't dedicate the resources to complete the truck project, which is understandable. The point is building one vehicle is hard, building 1,000 of that vehicle is really hard. (I worked with companies who built some of Tesla's production-line robots, so I know about many of the issues Tesla had to overcome.)

Whether or not you like electric vehicles, Elon Musk is an impressive individual with a lot of unique qualities that drive him to be successful. He is an innovator, that cannot be disputed. What about Chris Anthony and Steve Fambro? Elon quotes one of his friends as saying, "Starting a [successful] company is like chewing glass and staring into the abyss." He's also known for saying (roughly), "If one person is working 40 hours a week and you're working 100 you can accomplish what takes them a year in four months. Work as hard as you can every waking moment." Coupled with saying time is valuable, use it to enhance the end result, and if something doesn't make the product better, don't do it. This is a good part of why Elon has failed so many times yet continues to be successful. Do Chris and Steve of Aptera (Accelerated Composites) have that type of mentality? They haven't had the success or focus of Tesla, this is roughly the third restart of a company that closed its doors twice, depending on how you want to look at it. There's also two of them, necessitating even more focus, though two of them means cooperatively they can work 200 hours per week. Food for thought.
 
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