There is nothing unusual about me getting up early for a client, but this morning I found it a bit easier than usual to get up when the alarm went off nice and early again at just before five thirty. That is because I was going to witness an important moment for our client Lightyear via a livestream. They presented the first driving prototype of their revolutionary car to the world just after sunrise this morning.
And it is beautiful!!
As with all cars, opinions about its appearance will be (and continue to be) divided, but I, for one, can definitely appreciate it. But as a mechanical engineer and lover of cars I am particularly pleased with the technology behind those flowing lines.
DRIVING ON SOLAR POWER
At Lightyear they have clearly understood why I am still a passionate hybrid driver. Electric driving is fantastic - quiet, clean, nice and smooth. However in the current system, 100% electric driving is just too inconvenient for many people. You cannot get very far on one battery charge, and once you have found a charging station, chances are that someone else is using it or it has simply broken down. What possibly stands out most in the Lightyear One are the solar cells that have been integrated into the car. These recharge the batteries when the car is stationary or driving along. But that is just one of the features of the car that makes it so smart.
ENTIRELY NEW DESIGN
The car has been completely redesigned, with the most important goal being to make it as efficient as possible. If you do not need much energy to get from A to B, a small battery that can be recharged quickly and easily will suffice. This means that the Lightyear One does not need a charging station. A simple 220V socket and a standard extension cord is all it takes. That is quite something! This approach brings with it a number of technical challenges that lead to all kinds of innovations. The car has a separate, integrated engine in each wheel, for instance. A great deal of attention has also been paid to the aerodynamics, as can be seen, for example, from the covers over the top half of the rear wheels.
This morning's presentation of the driving prototype, is an important step in a major change in how we get around: you can go wherever you want, without having to worry about your mobility causing serious damage to the planet. As EP&C, we support the mission of the people of Lightyear, and we are proud that we are able to help them achieve their goals. We are happy to contribute to pioneering innovations that make the world a little better in combination with ambitious entrepreneurship.