Will Dutch startup Lightyear turn the game around?

Will Dutch startup Lightyear turn the game around?


Netherlands-based Lightyear expects to begin shipping its first One model next year. Even though this is a rather expensive electric car from a little-known brand, it looks like it has a chance to seriously affect the entire segment. The most attractive feature of the model is the power reserve, which according to the WLTP method is a solid 725 km.

But it is even more surprising that the “Light year” reaches such an impressive range with a battery of only 60 kW * h! How is this possible? It’s simple: on the roof of the car is a huge solar panel that generates electricity. It is not for nothing that Western journalists often compare One with the famous Volkswagen XL1, which at one time also set records for efficiency and cruising range. At the same time, like XL1, Lightyear One is a rather slow electric car: the claimed acceleration time to 100 km / h is just under 10 seconds.

Unlike many other startups that struggle with serial production, Lightyear has a good production base. One will be produced at the plant of the famous Finnish company Valmet Automotive – in the same place where the Mercedes-Benz A-Class and the GLC crossover are now being made. The promising Lightyear Two should also be registered in this Scandinavian enterprise.

According to the company’s plans, Two will debut in 2025 and will be an affordable alternative to the expensive One (which is estimated at about $ 175,000). The Two should be significantly cheaper than the older model – now we are talking about $ 30,500 – through the use of a much smaller battery. But at the same time, as the Dutch company promises, the power reserve of the “Two” will be twice as large, and the charging speed will be five times higher than that of competitors in the price segment! The secret of such energy efficiency lies again in the use of innovative solar panels, which will be equipped with a novelty.

In the meantime, Lightyear is preparing to release the beautiful One liftback, the production version of which will be shown in the first half of next year. At the same time, an exclusive series of 946 cars should go on sale. And the company expects to start full-fledged mass production in 2024.

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