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Old 08-05-2016, 01:44 PM   #1561 (permalink)
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The $6,800 is only for the 5 speed manual, with zero options. The 5 speed automatic could cost $1,000+ more. Most people will buy an automatic, so that means they can cover a small loss on the base model.

Options will certainly be where most of their profit will be?

Costs can be best predicted by the weight of the vehicle. The Elio is targeting 1,250 pounds - so that is $5.44 / pound.

The Nissan Versa base price is $11,990 and it weighs 2,363, or $5.07 / pound. How does Nissan do it?

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Old 08-05-2016, 01:50 PM   #1562 (permalink)
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Oddly enough, any rated 84 mpg will also be for the 5 speed manual. Maybe with a few options, but...
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Transmission type Efficiency
Manual neutral engine off.100% @MPG <----- Fun Fact.
Manual 1:1 gear ratio .......98%
CVT belt ............................88%
Automatic .........................86%

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Old 08-08-2016, 02:24 AM   #1563 (permalink)
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The 3 wheels does not equal 3/4 the price. You still have one of each of the most expensive things like motor, transmission, a/c system, controls, instruments, etc. The big makers figured out long ago it doesn't really cost less to build a small car as it does to build a big car. So if the least expensive car in the US is over $12,000 how does dropping a wheel get you almost 1/2 the cost? No doubt China or India could and do do it for that money, but we aren't talking $20/week labor, no EPA bureaucracy, stolen technology, and no content 20hp cars.
This, so much this.

Even if we are going for a lighter vehicle, the need to meet US emissions and safety regulations, as well as NVH targets and comfort requirements (AC? Heater?) will bump the price up.

Nissan gets away with the Versa because, partially, of low labor costs in Mexico, and because the sunk costs in terms of development and tooling have been amortized over two generations and spread across a product range that is sold globally in many different markets... and which further shares much of its switchgear, electronics and running gear with such varied products as the Sentra/Sylphy and NV200.

If you develop parts specifically for a small car while chasing lightness and economy, you end up with something like the Smart ForTwo. Expensive for what you get.

-

Elio had the chance to build its three-wheeler from off-the-shelf technology while still hitting its price and economy targets by pulling stuff off the shelf, but they didn't... they decided to scratch-build everything important. Our only "successful" business model for an automotive start-up in the 21st Century so far, Tesla, started off by mashing an already existing drivetrain into a an already existing body to create the Roadster... then building more and more in-house as time went on.

Elio, on the other hand, is trying to fly before it crawls.
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Old 08-08-2016, 09:11 AM   #1564 (permalink)
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Tesla also waited until they piled up the cash from the luxury/performance/early adopter markets before they targeted "affordable," which starts at over 5 times the Elio's announced target price.
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Transmission type Efficiency
Manual neutral engine off.100% @MPG <----- Fun Fact.
Manual 1:1 gear ratio .......98%
CVT belt ............................88%
Automatic .........................86%

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Old 08-08-2016, 02:45 PM   #1565 (permalink)
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Smaller engine is not cheaper, I can get a factory new 5.3 GM V-8 for less then a rebuilt 2.5 subaru motor.
On top of that those $12,000 Nissans and Mitsubishis are loss leaders. They lose money on every one sold. They may even be losing money on the whole line of Versa and Mirage not just the stripped ones.I believe the Neon was the first small car made by the Big 3 to ever stand alone and make money. Those cost more then this miracle Elio in 1993! At this point I wish we could just buy a newly built 1994 Neon for $7000, or a newly built Metro.
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Old 08-08-2016, 09:33 PM   #1566 (permalink)
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Well, as long as we're wishing, a 36hp Beetle for $2000.
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Old 08-08-2016, 11:55 PM   #1567 (permalink)
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Well, as long as we're wishing, a 36hp Beetle for $2000.
I still rather have the $999 25hp Subaru 360 sedan, lots of fun rowing through gears because you have tp
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Old 08-09-2016, 12:51 AM   #1568 (permalink)
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A friend's family had one of the small Subaru 2T vans in the early 1970s and I can remember 4-5 of us in it out on the highway. I'm sure that we could all lean slooooowly back, and then snap our upper bodies forward and see a small jump in the speedometer needle.

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It would be fun to have a Fiat Multipla



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Old 08-09-2016, 01:52 AM   #1569 (permalink)
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When I squint real hard at a Multipla I see a mini Schloerwagen... although I'm sure the back is too sloped thus there is no aero comparison.
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Old 08-09-2016, 05:26 AM   #1570 (permalink)
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Quote:
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Well, as long as we're wishing, a 36hp Beetle for $2000.
If it's an electric Beetle for $2k, I'd be ecstatic.

-

Inflation adjusted, the price of a fully loaded Beetle nowadays would match that of the Versa... which not only has better economy, more speed and more room... but would probably crash through a Beetle like a hot knife through butter in an accident.

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