The Sparrow, a compact, three-wheel, made-in-British-Columbia electric vehicle has received registration approval from the Ministry of Transportation, meaning that the start-up firm that makes the quirky, compact vehicle is able to sell them and people can legally drive them on the province’s roads.
The vehicle stretches barely 2.7 metres long, 1.2 metres wide and, employing a carbon fibre body also built in Canada, weighs just 578 kilograms. The Sparrow is suitable for a single driver, but offers a mid-sized trunk, and so can park in motorcycle and even bicycle spots.
With approval arriving last month, the car is fit for highway use and has a maximum speed of 130 kilometres per hour. The vehicle can travel up to 140 km on a single charge from its lithium-ion battery that takes four hours to fully recharge.
The firm that intends to build the car, Electrameccanica, currently has one prototype, but will construct a further 14 at the company’s New Westminster headquarters this year, a further 120 in 2016 and 1,200 the year after. The firm is looking to open a 200,000-square-foot assembly line facility somewhere in Metro Vancouver, which would be the first car plant to set up shop in BC.
The car will initially sell for $20,000, but with the BC electric vehicle $5,000 rebate, the founder of Electrameccanica, engineer Jerry Kroll, is hoping to see the price tag drop to around $15,000. The target market is commuters, but the firm also expects couriers, catering companies and municipal services.
The Climate Examiner speaks to BC-based Carbon Engineering about the technology, the business and the policies that could make direct air capture, synfuels and carbon sequestration work.