Zap Electric Car: Would You Drive this Electric Vehicle?
There seems to be big plans for the future too as there are some stylish concept cars that have been designed like the Alias. Although many small electric car manufacturers like Zap have had plenty of big plans for the future and they never seem to come to life!
I had a look at what they had to offer and hereís what I came up with:
Why should I buy a zap electric car?
Well, these cars are purebred all-electric.
They are technically classed as motorbikes (except the Zaptruck XL) because they only have three wheels which means it doesnít have the same restrictions that other similar cars with the same type of performance would, like the GEM electric car.
You can get a Xebra sedan, a Xebra truck, a Zapvan shuttle (a van/minibus), or a Zaptruck XL. Yes thatís Xebra with an X because its Xtra cool!
The big advantage with these, is that theyíre available now, unlike most electric cars out there that exist only to create waiting lists and broken deadlines!
Another great thing is that you have the option of getting a solar panel that attaches to the roof of the car or truck to add to the cars range by about 5 miles on a sunny day.
What are the specs?
The Xebra sedan version will get up to 65 km/h and has a range of up to 40 km. Itís powered by a DC motor and a lead acid battery which keep the price down. It can seat 4 people and weighs 1272kg. It also comes in right-hand drive so can be used in Ireland and the UK. It costs $11,700.
The Xebra truck is about the same except it seats two and has a weight capacity of 227kgs. It costs $12,500.
The Zaptruck XL gets 40 km/h and a range of 48 miles. Itís got an AC motor and a lead acid battery. It costs $14,500.
The Zapvan has the same speed and range as the Zaptruck XL. It can seat 5 or can be changed to be used as a van with two seats that can handle a payload of 400 kg. It costs $14,700.
Is there anything new on the horizon?
Funny you should ask because they have a new car coming out in the near future (supposedly December 2009) called the Alias. Itís set to be more of a sports car (or at least a car you can feel comfortable in on the motorway) and is supposed to blow the rest out of the water. It was partly designed by Lotus at the start, who are rapidly becoming the go-to people for designing electric cars like the Tesla Roadster.
This means it looks modern and much more stylish than the rest of the range. It claims to have a top speed of over 75mph a range of over 100 miles. It is also said to get from 0-60mph in 7.8 seconds and like the other cars itís going to be classed as a motorbike too. Zap are taking reservations now and it will cost $35,000 total.
The only problem I can see is that since they were classed as motorcycles they didnít do any crash testing. This is what keeps a lot of the cost down but also would make you feel pretty insecure in it. I think this would deter many potential buyers and probably me too.
The zap electric car is a supercar compared to an NEV like the GEM cars though, as it comes with everything you would expect in a normal car and has no speed restriction. I hope the Alias makes it to production though as thatís a car I would seriously consider!
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