The automobile producer, ZAP, has in plan a car that will beat the Prius or the Tesla Roadster in terms of power/consumption/autonomy/battery recharge time/pollution. They are dealing with Lotus in the making of this car.
The chassis is made of lightweight aluminum, it has 4WD, each wheel has a separate motor integrated, and its power reaches… hold on… 644HP! Also, there is a plus… due to the Li-Ion bio-degradable battery it has an autonomy of up to 350 miles! Wow. A lot… for an electric car. And if you’re out of “gas”, you may recharge it in as little as 10 minutes. Also, if you’re a sportscar fanatic, it might be useful to you that it reaches 155mph (that’s almost 250km/h, for the Europeans). And it goes from 0 to 60mph in 4.8seconds. Not bad. If you visit their site, you will find out that you can reserve one piece of this car at only 25.000$. That’s pretty much the price of a Prius. Of course, it may be not as roomy as the old Prius, but it certainly is a step forward to electric cars.
Also, starting several years ago, Siemens had plans to develop electric engines incorporated in the wheels. Each wheel was an engine itself, along with the suspension. So, if the “wheel” broke down at a certain point in its life, you would have to change the whole thing. It’s a good concept, as long as it’s reliable and relatively cheap (i can’t imagine hitting a road bump and ruining the entire car).
For computer geeks and Microsoft fans, there’s also a surprise in the ZAP-X Crossover: it has Windows XP installed on the “carputer”. It also features GPS, Bluetooth, WiFi, Hi-definition video, it’s iPod ready, firewire and USB/miniUSB ports.
I know first versions of anything have “bugs”, but as long as they’re insured and the bugs aren’t in the steering/engine/safety functions (by the way, the steering in rack-and-pinion, not drive-by-wire), as long as it’s been tested for all that, I already see myself driving it… how about you?