Blog: Getting into a Twizy
Dave Leggett | 27 March 2012
Could something like this be the New Cool?
Some interesting conversations at just-auto Towers today on car companies' EV product strategies.
Cars like the Nissan Leaf are one way to go. With this product development strategy, the starting point is to create a conventional car but one that is electric battery powered. A laudable objective in principle. But it's quite a challenge for the engineers and ends up, inevitably, being a fairly expensive bit of kit that comes with a degree of range anxiety. In a sense, such EVs are hampered by fighting for customer attention on the same ground as very capable (and increasingly so) conventional IC engine B- and C-segment cars. Even customers who voice interest in EVs may have second thoughts due to price when it comes to actually signing up.
Another approach is to go ground up with something much more radical as a transportation concept – the Opel RAKe or the Renault Twizy for example. A 'glorified golf buggy' like the Twizy may be much cheaper to do and may also come with acceptable performance in urban areas. It might even be seen as a 'cool' accessory for young Generation Y types who are attracted to personalisation and high tech. I just wonder if something affordable like the Twizy might stumble upon a sizeable market. However, the line could be very thin between a car like that being seen as either weird/silly or cool/desirable/forward looking though.
Overseas readers may be picking up media reports of a 'fracas' and a presenter's suspension at popular BBC TV programme Top Gear and wondering what's going on....
General Motors' European chief, Karl-Thomas Neumann, was on good form in Geneva this week....
- Briefing: developments in powertrain batteries
- THE WEEK THAT WAS: Chinese scoop up Pirelli
- COMMENT: Russia - it is rocket science
- ANALYSIS: VW Group - success and succession
- VEHICLE ANALYSIS: A new Volkswagen for the fleets
- Spat breaks out between Ford and Bentley
- Volvo Cars to build US factory
- GM management outlines reasons for Russia rethink
- New York show debuts: Porsche Boxster Spyder added
- Tesla to unveil 'major new non-car product line'