Axon previews electric car in Milton Keynes
Cleantech car developer, Axon Automotive, based in Northants, has previewed its plug-in hybrid electric vehicle at the Milton Keynes Science Festival.
The vehicle combines full electric mode for local travel and uses a petrol or bioethanol powered engine for long distance or motorway travel.Axon Automotive uses revolutionary manufacturing techniques to make carbon fibre technology, which has been associated with racing cars, affordable for eco cars."By designing light cars and giving them good aerodynamics you can radically lower vehicle emissions," says Axon's MD, Dr Steve Cousins."As a plug-in hybrid we have no limitation on range but we can maximise the benefits of electrics day to day without the cost and weight of large batteries."The Axon car is a multipurpose vehicle built for two adults plus substantial amounts of luggage. Stressing that carbon fibre can be recycled, the car has fashion house designed seating made from recycled fabrics (jeans and recycled pinstriped suits) and door panels made from recycled carbon fibre to complete this new approach to cars in a low CO2 world.Axon insists that electric powered vehicles should be clear about the emissions to make the electricity they use.Dr Cousins said: "We have had our greenhouse gas emissions calculated to include typical UK powerstation emissions when driving in electric mode."The result gives us just under 50g/CO2 per km for the mix of electric and petrol used in the Government test. This is just half the level needed for free annual road tax in UK for this car," (band `A' is below 100g/CO2 per km = zero road tax in the UK).Axon Automotive is the only UK owned car company making a plug-in hybrid EV and is funded by the UK Technology Strategy Board and private investment.The first cars will be on sale in 2011 with full production in 2012. The manufacturing roll-out will be via small factories in the UK and in Europe including Spain, France, Ireland, Denmark, and Holland.