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MetroMPG 02-11-2009 08:43 PM

Road & Track road test of Aptera prototype (video + damage)

Road & Track Magazine - Exclusive: Aptera 2e (2/2009)

OK, so the "damage" I'm referring to is minimal, but if you watch the video where they show the car accelerating rapidly from a stop, you can see (and hear, I think) the rear end squat down and the rear wheel pant strikes the ground, leaving two white stripes on the pavement on either side of the tire.

They seem to like the way it drives/handles. Pushed it hard around a few bends (hard enough to hear tire squeal).

Videos: there are supposedly 3 parts, but Part 2 is missing from their video console - Road&Track

MetroMPG 02-11-2009 08:51 PM

1 Attachment(s)
Here's the pavement strike...

Aptera can be forgiven for this - they're undoubtedly still working on things like suspension stiffness, etc.

Note the set of white stripes just behind the rear tire. They weren't on the pavement before the car went "bump" in the video.

Daox 02-11-2009 09:04 PM

Nah, thats probably just that vapor effect that happens on the tips of jet's wings when they turn. :)

Frank Lee 02-11-2009 10:32 PM

Skirts that low are gonna cause them more problems than that...

NeilBlanchard 02-12-2009 12:16 AM


It is very quiet, that's for sure! I want one even more, now...:thumbup:

All the videos seem to be working, now.

tjts1 02-13-2009 05:04 PM

I'm glad they put some hurt on it. I want to see a real 40% offset crash test of this car. It all looks and sounds very promising. I would be interested in the all gasoline version. I would love to autoX it.

I like this shot.
Thats a very trick suspension setup and there is plenty of room for a small gasoline engine. The Smart engine and transmission would fit in there easily.

Frank Lee 02-13-2009 05:11 PM

I'd wager a hit that would be a minor parking lot fender-bender on my car would dang near total that thing.

tjts1 02-13-2009 05:14 PM


Originally Posted by Frank Lee (Post 87693)
I'd wager a hit that would be a minor parking lot fender-bender on my car would dang near total that thing.

I'll take that bet.

Frank Lee 02-13-2009 05:17 PM

How much? :)

Let's have one like my car recently DID have: jerkoff backs into driver's front wheel. Fender and driver's door take the hit on my car... Aptera's exposed wheel takes the whole hit. Sheet metal structure vs. vital suspension components hmmmm.

tjts1 02-13-2009 05:23 PM

You unbolt the control arm and install a new one. Any mechanic capable of replacing a strut knows how to do it. Big deal. Try replacing a welded 1/4 panel or the bent steel frame of a car. My concern with the Aptera is that the composite structure is too stiff and it will transmit all the energy of the impact to the occupants. I don't see how they designed in crumple zones where the structure is meant to fail. If you look at videos of old F1 or indicar racers from the 50s and 60s, the cars had extremely rigid welded steel tube frame which would come out of a 200mph crash undamaged while the driver was severely injured or killed. Ironically, the introduction of composites made the cars much safer by designing in failure points to cushion the impact. I haven't seen any of that from Aptera yet except to say that the structure is extremely stiff which it obviously is.

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