I drove a 3-wheeled, one-seater electric car on a mini road trip through Southern California and I’m convinced it could change how we get from A-to-B




ElectraMeccanica SOLO EVThe ElectraMeccanica SOLO EV.

The ElectraMeccanica SOLO EV is an electric car that can expedition 100 miles on a full price. Yes, it’s a one-seater with three motors, but it has the creature comforts of a full-sized vehicle. It’s a fun-to-drive ride around municipality, and perfectly capable of longer highway jaunts.

Lately, I’ve feel about choices. In the US, there’s no famine of options when you’re shop for a automobile. You got to find an unlimited inventory of four-door sedans, coupes, wagons, trucks, vans — and an overabundance of crossovers and SUVs and( crossover SUV coupes ), supply series crisis and semiconductor chip shortage notwithstanding.

But I just wonder if it always obliges gumption to have four motors and various empty seats when I’m on the road. What about an in-between car for when I only need to run a speedy errand, pick up food, or simply drive solo to my destination? And what if that in-between car could be a clean-energy vehicle I could plug into a wall outlet in my garage?

I had a couple weeks in October to think about those questions when I got the keys to a SOLO EV, a three-wheeled, one-seater electric car from ElectraMeccanica.

ElectraMeccanica SOLO EVThe ElectraMeccanica SOLO EV.

So, let’s get the self-evident out of the way: yes, the SOLO EV ogles quirky. People often stopped to take photographs of it as it sat in the driveway. One person jokingly expected: “Where’s the rest of it? “

ElectraMeccanica SOLO EVThe ElectraMeccanica SOLO EV.

But the more I zipped around Los Angeles in it during the warm early days of twilight, the more I wanted to drive. The comfy, well-bolstered seat, air-conditioning, and Bluetooth audio shaped the SOLO EV feel like my own personal rocket. It quite easily get “youre going to” an 80 mile-per-hour top speed, which I found to be plenty for the roadway.

“We’ve been working to really, rightfully tune into the personal transportation needs of our customers.” That’s Kevin Pavlov, the CEO of ElectraMeccanica. He and the company’s bos financial officer, Bal Bhullar, sat down with me at an October delivery event where early reservation holders drove away in their own SOLO EVs.

Who truly needs a one-seater electric car though? It’s a fair question. Pavlov said he’s confident there is a sizable grocery for the SOLO, be it as a sail vehicle for last-mile transmissions, for college campuses, and beyond. “I think the market’s going to keep telling us where the niches go and that provides us the time to continue to meet more personalized reacts, ” he said.

ElectraMeccanica SOLO EVThe ElectraMeccanica SOLO EV.

We’re in the early aughts of an automotive rebellion right now. Battery electric vehicles are becoming more popular as automakers interpose brand-new prototypes and governments reach plans to phase out internal combustion engines over the coming decade. Where you formerly could count the number of available electric cars on one paw, there are now dozens available, and many more in the pipeline. And they’re getting less expensive, too. The SOLO EV is gonna be “ve been here for” $18,500.

Thankfully, all of the talk about range anxiety in those early days of the electric car is pretty much moot now. Most electrical vehicles can hasten at least 200 miles on a full charge.

Range nervousnes is overrated, anyway

After a few short-lived tours close to home in the SOLO EV, I started to wonder how far I could extend its 100 -mile range. On the surface it voices insignificant, but considering moves will largely use this for short commutes and junkets about town, 100 miles is truly more than enough.

Pavlov summarized it up poetically: “Some beings will drive 10 miles, some will go 30 miles. Other people want to drive it to work. And some will drive this vehicle to go find themselves.”

And that’s when I had an idea. I thought about the very first car review I did for Business Insider back in 2015 when I drove what was then the brand-new Volvo XC9 0 from LA to San Francisco on one tank of gas, and visualized I’d try for a long-ish excursion in the SOLO EV. Not actually to find myself, but to prove that range anxiety is indeed overrated.

So I planned to take the SOLO eastward, from LA to the high desert, a roughly 75 -mile, one-way drive.

Status at the beginnings of the expedition: 99% charge.

ElectraMeccanica SOLO EVThe ElectraMeccanica SOLO EV.

The long and short of it is, this electrical three-wheeler proved itself to be a fun, ability and versatile go. I cruised comfortably to the desert, A/ C gush, music playing, in the marvelous solitude of my personal battery-powered coach.

I pulled up to a drive-thru for lunch with about 26 miles of stray to spare.

ElectraMeccanica SOLO EVThe ElectraMeccanica SOLO EV.

Great news for me since the ChargePoint location I planned to visit was just another three miles away.

ElectraMeccanica SOLO EVThe ElectraMeccanica SOLO EV.

Once I arrived, I walked away to enjoy my lunch and visit with family. A little more than two hours later, I returned to find the SOLO EV had regained 90% of its battery indictment, more than enough for the 75 -mile trip back home.

ElectraMeccanica SOLO EVThe ElectraMeccanica SOLO EV.

Minimalist driving

In a nature of automobiles that seem larger and faster than ever, it’s nice to slip into something that’s anti-all of that. The SOLO EV is large enough( even for my 6-foot-2-inch make) and quick enough to scoot past gasoline-powered vehicles from a stop, thanks to the instant torque you get from the electric motor.

ElectraMeccanica SOLO EVThe ElectraMeccanica SOLO EV.

And perhaps that project of “just enough” is indeed suitable for this segment of the micromobility room. All the better if it helps retain our environment.

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