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Old 06-30-2017, 07:07 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Lightyear One - from solar racer to commercial product

Students from the Technical University Eindhoven have built a line of family class solar racers called Stella.
Only recently they presented its last incarnation, the Stella Vie.
They won the World Solar Challenge Cruiser Class twice.

As the goal is to build cars that can be practically used, and are road legal for that matter, many wonder what it would be like to actually own one.
But there were no plans to sell them to the public.

That may change soon.
A group of ex-students of the TUE who were part of Solar Team Eindhoven have formed a company named Lightyear.

A few shots of their Lightyear One virtual prototype:



It has a battery range of 400 to 800 km, depending on battery pack options.



The solar cells cover the entire roof and back.



It won't be cheap: "Starting from 119,000 excluding taxes."

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Old 06-30-2017, 12:03 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Choke, choke: "It won't be cheap: "Starting from €119,000 excluding taxes."
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Old 06-30-2017, 01:44 PM   #3 (permalink)
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If it is (nearly) self-powered, then it will cost a lot, yes. But the design looks very good indeed, so maybe a regular BEV version with PV panels for your house would be reasonable?
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Old 06-30-2017, 01:49 PM   #4 (permalink)
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I think they first need to learn how to create actual images of their car, rather than a few red & white streaks on a black background.

Then they need some basic math to figure out that those solar cells aren't going to produce enough power to run the car.
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Old 06-30-2017, 02:39 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jamesqf View Post
I think they first need to learn how to create actual images of their car, rather than a few red & white streaks on a black background.

Then they need some basic math to figure out that those solar cells aren't going to produce enough power to run the car.
You read anything about who they are and why they think it will work, no?

Sticking 2 square meter worth of 23% efficiency solar cells on a standard BEV is not going to result in a practical charge-free car. If you cover a Tesla with solar cells you get about 2000 free miles per year, tops. It is not worth it.

So they will use a design not unlike the solar racers, with expensive solar cells, batteries with extreme power to weight ratio and lost of super light materials; they expect to keep the weight well below one metric tonne.

But most of all it needs to be a practical car, more than the Stella racecars are. You can get the groceries in those, or do a weekend trip with the family, but they are compromised by the race design. Still, the Stella Vie is not that bad looking.
If the Lightyear One can retain half the efficiency of Stella Vie then they will easily match their aim.
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Old 06-30-2017, 03:08 PM   #6 (permalink)
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It's called "Burlesque Marketing," borrowed from the oldest profession, tease'em with just enough of a glimpse to get them interested (pasties not included).

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Old 06-25-2019, 05:10 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Lightyear presented a prototype of the Lightyear One at dawn this morning, and Electrek was quick to pick it up:

https://electrek.co/2019/06/25/lightyear-one-solar-electric-car-range/


Quick picks:
- 450 miles (725 km) of WLTP range
- approx. 5 square meter of solar panels (50 sqft)
- Up to 20,000 km (12,500 miles) per year added range from its solar panels
- up to 12 km of range per hour added from its panels
- 5 seats
- 4 hub motors (!) on tall and narrow wheels. So no gears, diffs, drive axles.

- 0-100 km/h (62 mph) in 10 seconds

The first series of 500 cars will be more expensive than any Tesla you can buy today. But then you have a car you'd never have to charge if you don't drive too much.
Even if you do charge it, it does not take much as it has a relatively small battery (size not disclosed yet) though it can charge at up to 60 kW at level 3 chargers.

At least it doesn't look too bad.


First delivery expected somewhere in 2021.
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Old 06-25-2019, 11:36 AM   #8 (permalink)
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I'm sorry, I am having a huge problem moving numbers around to make this work.
My 1/4 mile calculator choked.

The solar is putting out way more power, the car weighs too little, the CofD is nonexistent. 6ish miles on solar recharge????? 0 to 60 in ten??
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Old 06-25-2019, 12:38 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Yeah it will be self powered if you live some where that has sun 365 days a year and drive less than 10 miles a day.
I highly doubt the solar panels will add 12,500 miles per year.
That's 34 miles per day. That would take about 7.5kw per day in a normal electric car. That's the equivalent of about 1,500w worth of panels.
That's the surface area of 5 of my 39 x 76 inch 295w solar panels. That's like 103 square feet facing the sun at all times.
So nothing adds up here.

Unless they figure you are going to drive 25 mph in the city and still get an unprecedented 10 miles per kwh (that means never using the heat or A/C).
Yeah nothing adds up unless they have some huge super secret technological advantage.
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Old 06-25-2019, 01:27 PM   #10 (permalink)
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The Sunpower 360watt panels (22.2% efficiency) are 1558mm x 1046mm = 1.63 sq meters. That means the 5 sq meters on the Lightyear would be 1100W. Which is a lot to fit on a car, but not impossible.

My 10kW solar panels produce as much as 68kWh in a day, so that is about 7.4kWh a day. If their 12,500 miles / year is real, that is about 218Wh / mile, which is quite believable. We average about 200Wh / mile on our e-Golf.

12,500 miles a year = 34.2 miles / day.

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