Tech

The Lightyear One’s solar EV wants to dethrone Tesla as range king

In a recent track test, the electric startup clocked 441 miles on a single charge.

Tesla might not have a monopoly on long-range EVs for long

In a recent track test, EV startup Lightyear clocked its prototype, the Lightyear One, at 441 miles of range on a single drive cycle, making it a potential frontrunner among long-range EVs.

Lightyear One on the test track.

While it’s too early to crown Lightyear the successor to EVs like Tesla’s Model S Long Range, which gets about 405 miles on a single charge, the track test shows a lot of promise, not just range in range, but in efficiency.

50%

Lightyear says that other EVs use about 50 percent more energy traveling at similar speeds.

53 mph

The Lightyear One maintained speeds of about 53 mph during its test.

Lightyear says its batteries are not only more efficient but relatively small, coming in at just 60kWh. Aiding in its goal of an eventual max range of 450 miles is the car’s use of solar panels.

According to Electrek, Lightyear’s CEO, Lex Hoefsloot, says the prototype’s solar capabilities only added about 25 miles due to overcast conditions during the test run but could add as many as 45 miles on an ideal day.

Though encouraging, it’s still too early to celebrate Lightyear’s EV as the new long-range king, there’s still additional testing to be done and the car won’t actually enter limited production until the second half of 2022.

Only time will tell if the Lightyear can truly go this distance

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