Toyota’s SingleSeater Electric Car You Can Park In Your Kitchen Forbes

29 Апр 2014 | Author: | Комментарии к записи Toyota’s SingleSeater Electric Car You Can Park In Your Kitchen Forbes отключены
Toyota FT-EV Electric Cars

Toyota’s Single-Seater Electric Car You Can Park In Your Kitchen

Chiba, Japan – Coms, a line of all-electric cars released by Toyota earlier this year, don’t have many of the amenities you’d expect in a regular car.

Beep Beep

They have one seat, for instance, and about enough room in the trunk for two grocery bags. They top out at 60 kilometers (37.5 miles) per hour. And, because they weigh only approximately 410 kilograms, they can only ferry around 140 kilograms, or 308 pounds, worth of driver and cargo.

There are probably Rascal scooters that can beat the Coms on several of those metrics.

But, you can also drive them into the kitchen of a townhouse, points out Takeshi Matsunaga, project advisor at Toyota Auto Body. One of the use case scenarios is a car that can come into the house, during a meeting at CEATEC. a technology trade show taking place this week outside of Tokyo. (Toyota also has a subsidiary, Toyota Home, which builds around 4,500 houses a year here.)

Home and car are big themes for Japan’s large tech manufacturers these days. Squeezed in the TV and smart phone market by Samsung, LG, Apple and others, Panasonic. Sharp.

Toyota and others are trying to adapt their expertise in precision engineering and industrial design to everyday objects. Ford. Microsoft and others, of course, are aiming at the same goal.

No matter how you look at it, the “Smart Home” and “Smart Car” are going to be tough to avoid.

Toyota FT-EV Electric Cars

Since July, Toyota has sold 1,000 of the vehicles, he said. The four different models range in price from 798,000 yen ($10,000) for the sportiest version to 668,000 yen ($8,922) for the delivery man’s special.

Whether or not single-seater cars move from the oddity niche of the market to a genuine, sustainable niche in transportation remains to be seen. Conventional wisdom says no. Cars represent freedom and autonomy and you’re not going to feel the breeze blow back your hair in a car that looks like it fell off a carnival ride.

The driving range of Coms cars also top out at around 50 kilometers. Adding batteries would add cost, but more importantly, weight, which would crimp the driving range. If you bought one, you would drive in a circumscribed world.

But “city” is the operative word, say proponents. Over half of the global population lives in cities and many are crowded, dirty and short on parking. In the U.S. one of the brightest segments in the housing market has been for urban homes in walking distance of business corridors.

Automotive executives have also pointed to an ominous trend (for them) among young consumers: they don’t care nearly as much about cars as smart phones. Car networks that free you the hassles of ownership and parking are growing rapidly.

Demographics, in other words, favor inexpensive grab n’ go transportation. Just as Lee Iacocca made his career by playing to the youthful zest of the Baby Boomers in the 1960s with the Mustang, Toyota will try to capitalize on the diminished expectations of global slackerdom.

Toyota FT-EV Electric Cars
Toyota FT-EV Electric Cars
Toyota FT-EV Electric Cars
Toyota FT-EV Electric Cars
Toyota FT-EV Electric Cars

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