European car makers Pininfarina and Bolloré have created BlueCar, a hybrid vehicle powered by lithium-polymer batteries. According to the car makers the first units of this electric car will be delivered in about a year. Leases for the BlueCar will be available in six European countries at a cost of €330 per month.
BlueCar will be able to be charged from a standard domestic main socket and will have a range of 250 km (153 miles). The car will have a top speed of 130 km/h (80 mph) and will feature potent acceleration, reaching 60 km/h from a standing start (0 to 37 mph) in 6.3 seconds. According to Pininfarina and Bollore the BlueCar will be able to run about 30 km (20 miles) on only a charge of a few minutes. The car will also be equipped with solar panels on the roof to help power the electrical equipments as well as its heating and air-conditioning system. Critics say the solar panels are a cool addition to the car but that it will make the car more expensive.
The lithium-polymer battery inside the BlueCar, also called LMP, will have an expected lifetime of about 200,000km (125,000 miles). BlueCar is also equipped with a battery pack and supercapacitors to capture energy when the car is braking
"In an electric car, supercapacitors draw and store energy generated while the car is braking and feed it back into the system when the car moves off again. The result is greater acceleration, increased range and a longer lifespan for the car's battery."
The seat covers are leather-like covers produced from vegetable sources. The BlueCar will be, according to early plans, only available in France, Italy, Germany, United Kingdom, Spain and Switzerland. Production numbers are set to 10,000 cars in 2010, 20,000 in 2011 and 30,000 in 2012.