German solar electric vehicle maker Sono Motors announced on Tuesday that it had successfully funded € 53million (AU $ 85million) to fund the company, exceeding its target of € 50million thanks in large part reservations made for the Sion – the company’s first solar electric vehicle. vehicle.
Sono Motors said its crowdfunding campaign, launched in December, raised an average of one million euros per day, of which 75% came from bookings made for Sion, while 19% came from existing and new investors, and 6% final. through loans and donations.
“53 million euros, invested by the center of society, for the concept of prospective and sustainable mobility of a start-up is a clear signal, also sent to politicians to make adjustments” said Laurin Hahn, CEO and co-founder of Sono Motors.
“Electromobility and support for start-ups in Germany must be pursued faster and more vigorously. At Sono Motors, we now consider it our responsibility to live up to the trust our supporters place in us. Together with the community, we will continue our journey to bring the Sion into production as quickly as possible. “
Sono Motors plans to produce a total of 260,000 of its Zion Solar Electric Vehicle (SEV) over an eight-year period, using the former Saab plant in Trollhättan, Sweden. There are currently 13,000 reservations for Sion, which the company obviously hopes to increase over time.
The Sion SEV is touted as the world’s first solar electric vehicle, featuring 248 solar cells “seamlessly integrated into the body” of the vehicle, meaning it can charge its battery during the day while on the move.
Sono Motors explains that “in Germany, for example, up to 34 kilometers of additional range per day can be generated by solar energy alone.
The Sion also includes a two-way on-board charger, which means the vehicle can share its power to help charge other electric vehicles.
The Sion’s liquid-cooled battery will have a capacity of 35 kWh and offer a range of up to 255 km on a single charge, depending on the weather and your driving style.
Sono Motors also strives to ensure the total sustainability of its Sion, by committing to offset all unavoidable CO emissions produced during the manufacturing process and by using 100% renewable energy to power its operations.
The company’s decision to move towards a more transparent financing strategy has forced it to postpone production of Sion’s first series of solar electric vehicles until September 2021.
“We have realized time and again over the past few months that we have totally different goals than traditional financial investors,” Hahn said in the explanation. back in december.
“Aggressive growth and rapid profits are difficult to reconcile with a sustainable business and vehicle concept designed to provide access to affordable and environmentally friendly electromobility.
“In addition, providing venture capital to start-ups that have a capital-intensive business model does not work in Germany, neither in the initial stages nor in the growth stage.
“If we had relied solely on financing measures or the German market environment, Sono Motors probably wouldn’t exist in its current form. Urgent action is required from politicians in this area.
“It should be possible to implement such a future project in Germany and lead it to economic success. We will continue to fight anyway. For climate-friendly mobility and for our reservation holders.