The Italian automotive design company Zagato will begin selling the Volpe, a €6,900 ($9,016) electric city car in 2013, Left Lane News reported Monday.
The Volpe, "Fox" in Italian, was unveiled by the company on the Italian Sky 3D television channel on April 4, when the company announced it would begin selling the odd looking range-extended electric car (REEV) in 2013. The Zagato Volpe has been in development since 2005.
Zagato, which is better known for manufacturing special editions of exotic sports cars from Ferrari, Bugatti and Aston Martin, made a drastic departure from its almost 100 years of history in creating the Volpe, although some classic Zagato design cues like the bubble-top are still evident.
Zagato was not alone in designing the Volpe, though: the company joined forces with legendary designer Romano Artioli, best known for the Bugatti EB110 and the Lotus Elise, Left Lane News reported.
The Volpe is Lilliputian at just 2.2 meters long (a hair over 7 ft., 2 in.), and 1 meter (roughly 3 ft., 3 in.) wide. The car has aluminum scissor doors with a steel body and was purposefully designed for urban use. The car can carry a driver with a passenger sitting behind, like on a motorcycle.
The Volpe will come in two different versions, Left Lane News reported, an electric only version with a range of 43 miles, which can be extended slightly using rooftop solar cells, and a REEV with a gasoline or natural gas engine to recharge the batteries but not directly power the car. The REEV is capable of 236 miles. The electric only version will have a top speed of 30 mph, while the REEV version will reach a limited top speed of 50 mph.
The electric version of the Volpe will start at €6,900 ($9,016), although no price is known yet for the REEV version. At such a price, the Volpe might be the cheapest road-legal electric car on the market.
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