It began as a radical idea. To design and build a solar-powered, hyper-efficient family vehicle. After six years, hundreds of sketches and iterations, and with the help of our tenacious team, it has finally become a reality.
Looking back at the Lightyear 0 car design
Lightyear 0 will begin production next week.
We’ve worked hard with our partner, renowned car manufacturer Valmet Automotive, to develop a specialised production line designed specifically for the production of our solar electric car. We recently delivered to the Valmet Automotive facilities our patented solar arrays, which we manufacture in our dedicated factory in Venray, the Netherlands. Starting next week, the first Lightyear 0 models will be released there.
The first solar-powered automobile in the world: Lightyear 0.
However, how did we get here? Let’s recall the beginning of everything. The idea for Lightyear first came to a group of visionaries in the sweltering Australian outback as they celebrated winning the World Solar Challenge for the fourth time in a row.
They imagined a society in which everyone had access to solar-powered vehicles. Where everything could be done cleanly and without being constrained by the electrical grid, including everyday commutes, weekend getaways, and impromptu road trips into the wilds and back.
It was time to expand on the design and technology of their award-winning solar car Stella in order to provide clean mobility for everyone, everywhere.
Lightyear’s Creation 0
Our design had to be sleek, contemporary, and deserving of the trail it will blazing in addition to harnessing the power of the sun. The future solar automobile started to come to life through collaboration with Granstudio, a renowned automotive design firm based in Turin, Italy.
A rough design was produced virtually in 3D at the initial sketch process, with an emphasis on proportions. Following the completion of this design, the car was scaled down in foam and clay to create the first physical exterior models.
A design prototype with a complete interior was subsequently constructed and made public in June 2019.
prototype in design Lightyear 0.
The following phase was to build a completely functional prototype in order to further and validate our technology. In order to produce our production-intent automobiles, which we also utilised for crash testing and other safety validation, we integrated this vehicle with the aesthetics of our design prototype after it passed all of the validation tests. All of this culminated in the final production automobile, which will be put together starting next week when our production line starts up.
When it comes to energy usage, our solar automobile also had to create the wheel from scratch. We went out to develop the world’s most effective electric vehicle.
Officially, Lightyear 0 is the most aerodynamic production vehicle in history. Lightyear 0 soars over the roadways for a longer period of time on a single charge thanks to its low drag coefficient of 0.175 Cd, which allows it to cut through the air like no other and lose less energy to air resistance. This level of efficiency results in fewer plug charges and significantly less strain on the power system.
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