Munich-based electric car startup Sono Motors has published an update on the status of buying interest: 13,000 private customers have now made reservations for the upcoming Sion solar minivan, with an average down payment of $3,600 (€3,000). Even before the start of production, an order value totaling $333 million (€278 million) could be booked.
According to Sono Motors, the reservers of the Sion live mainly in Germany and the DACH region (Germany, Austria, Switzerland). However, the company said it is also seeing an increasing number of reservations from other countries such as Italy, Spain, Portugal, Finland and Mauritius. On an interactive map created by the Sono Motors fan community, the geographic distribution of some reservations can be viewed, he said.
“13,000 reservations is a clear sign for us and the entire automotive industry. The number underscores people’s need for resource-efficient and affordable mobility and gives us momentum to get the Sion on the road as soon as possible,” said Jona Christians, CEO and co-founder of Sono Motors
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The company originally planned to deliver the new Sion in 2022
Sono Motors had originally planned to start delivering its debut Sion to customers in 2022 after several delays, but it will now be delayed again. “After ramping up production in 2023 and increasing to maximum capacity within the same year, the company plans to produce 43,000 vehicles per year in 2-shift operation together with contract manufacturer NEVS,” the latest announcement reads. The total production volume is expected to be 257,000 vehicles over a seven-year period. The production facility will be the former SAAB plant in Trollhättan, Sweden, which is now operated by National Electric Vehicle Sweden (NEVS).
Sono Motors promises a range of 255 kilometers with the Sion, which costs from $30,600 (€25,500). With the help of solar cells integrated into the body, it should be possible to generate electricity for up to 34 kilometers a day. The company cites mobility services such as car-sharing and ride pooling as further highlights of the vehicle, which has been in development since 2016. “Powersharing” is also intended to turn the Sion into a mobile charging station for electric appliances and other e-vehicles.
The current state of the Sion was presented earlier this year with a new prototype. So far, Jona Christians and his two co-founders Laurin Hahn and Navina Pernsteiner, who are also still young, have largely financed the project via crowdfunding. According to its own statements, Sono Motors still needs at least 200 million euros for the start of series production. According to media reports, the capital needed for a successful market launch could soon be raised on the U.S. stock exchange.
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First published in ecomento.de, a third-party contributor translated and adapted the article from the original. In case of discrepancy, the original will prevail.
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