The battery electric car, called BEV right from the beginning, was one of the first kinds of car to be invented, tested and put on the market. Between 1832 and 1839, the Scottish entrepreneur Robert Anderson invented the first electric coach in its basic shape.

    In the same period, the far-seeing professor Sibrandus Stratingh, born in Groningen, Netherlands, designed a little electric car, which was built later by his faithful assistant Christopher Becker in 1835.

    The battery improvement, due to the French Gaston Plante in 1865 and Camille Faure in 1881, enabled the electric vehicles to develop. Just France and Great Britain were the first witnesses of the electric car market growth.

    At the end of the 19th century, before the sensational advent of the internal combustion engine, powerful but very polluting, the electric car held many records
  • of speed and distance covered with one charge.

    Among the most important results reached in those years of great experiments, without doubt we remember the one achieved by Camille Jenatzy on the 29Th of April 1899. His rocket-shaped electric vehicle, called Jamais Contente, reached the extraordinary speed of 105.88 km/h, exceeding for the first time the 100 km/h barrier. Making a leap forward in time, we find that the first real electric vehicles battery-operated (BEV), produced on a large scale for example by Anthony Electric, Baker Electric, Detroit Electric and other firms, sold more than gas-fueled cars in the first years of the 20th century. However, because of the technological limits of the batteries and of the absence of a control system for charge and drive (by transistor or thermionic tube), the maximum speed of these vehicles only arrived to about 32 km/h.

    Later on, these means of transport, fated to foretell a future which was distant from them but very close to us, were successfully marketed as town car (vehicles to be used in districts or villages) for well-off customers. Not only, but they were also considered vehicles suitable for women, since easy to use, clean and noiseless.
  • The real revolution compared to the classic combustion vehicles lay in the fact that it was not necessary to top up the water or the oil level or to replace the spark-plugs, not to mention some maintenance operations such as the lubrication with graphite or the engine cleaning.

    From the beginning of the 20th century onwards, many inventors and hundreds of firms all over the world had launched into the production of zero-emission vehicles. We remember an evocative and peculiar picture of 1913 which reproduces Thomas Edison (one of the most important inventors of the last 1000 years, father of the filament lump) just while is admiring an electric car.

    This first historical analysis reveals that, after the first years of the 20th century, characterized by all sorts of testing (among others, the first electric car realized by the Italian company STAE, equipped with a centrally placed 10cv electric engine having a range of 80-90 km with a speed od 30 km/h. An example of this car belongs to the permanent collection of the National Car Museum of Turin), in the golden years after the Second World War many models were produced.
    In the economic boom, between the 50s and the 60s, Henney Kilowatt launched on the market the first modern electric car (transistor-controlled), which was able to reach the speed of 95 km/h on the motorway and was even equipped with
  • modern hydraulic brakes.

    But actually only few vehicles were produced, apparently less than 100, in fact we have to wait until the end of the 70s to arrive to a large-scale production, when the little single-seat car called Sinclair C5 reached and passed the amazing number of 12,000 sales. In the same period in Switzerland the Pilcar appeared, an electric drive car manufactured, from 1977 to 1979, in the firm having the same name, founded at Geneva by the “Eletricité Neuchâteloise SA” and the “Société Romanda d'Electricité”. The purpose of Pilcar was to produce electric cars to be used in those big cities which, already in the seventies, began to suffer the consequences of polluting and traffic due to the presence of a high number of motor vehicles. Especially, the design had the object of avoiding the atmospheric emission through the electric drive and of solving the parking problem by means of the reduced size.

    In this way, Pilcar had a far-seeing idea and realized a great invention.
    But everybody knows that man has always had little attention to environment conservation, due to his self-absorption and his hedonistic principle: to succeed in obtaining the highest profit with the least effort from his business. And inside this concept which can seem wide and profitable, in effect there are not very lofty
  • thoughts.

    In order to explain this line of reasoning it is necessary to think to the advent and the great success had by standard combustion vehicles during the last and a half century. Of course they are faster but also more invasive at ecological level and little attentive to possible contraindications for environment and men’s health. Moreover, the historical period worked against the special and futuristic electric quadricycle Pilcar.

    In fact, between the end of the 70s and the beginning of the 80s, the globalized culture of big industries and public opinion surely was not attentive to pollution and ecological problems. During the last years, on the contrary, the market has seen prototypes of all sorts and for all tastes: vehicles with various size, shapes and colours but nearly all little attractive from an aesthetic point of view and, above all, without real programs addressed to environment and strong and targeted communication plans able to make a new concept of Ecomobility clear and credible. This seems the right moment to enter a mature market, however hoping that people ecological culture is so careful to firmly believe that our future is addressed to renewable and recyclable energy. We can’t afford to keep any cliché because our planet is giving us the bill.

    SONITA enters the world history of the electric vehicles through the project EEELCAR “ECONOMICAL, ECOLOGICAL, ELETTROCAR” FOR TRANSPORTING PEOPLE, LITTLE ANIMALS AND GOODS. It is a product for development and progress which doesn’t unbalance the natural cycles of the environment. It gives the new era the go-ahead, using earth’s resources without impoverish our planet and the knowledge acquired through the progress.

    So, we have arrived to the new millennium with the best purposes and the intention, real or presumed, to clamp down on the transport system which at present is almost entirely based on "oil" vehicles. But the manufacture and production of electric vehicles have to face difficulties and problems due to their technical characteristics and production costs. “FEATURE SEARCHED FOR BY SONITA”.

    In order to be really eco-friendly, the electric cars have to be light. This is a basic standard because the more a vehicle is heavy, the more it consumes energy. And since currently most of the electric power is still produced through oil combustion, a too heavy electric car would consume indirectly the same quantity of fossil fuel
  • of a traditional vehicle, with the same CO2 emission in the atmosphere. So the first objective is to make the vehicle light. “FEATURE SEARCHED FOR BY SONITA”.

    For example, plastic-based composite materials, maybe recycled and mostly recyclable if possible, are able to offer, besides lightness, another essential requirement for the customers: the resistance to impacts and therefore the maximum safety. “FEATURE SEARCHED FOR BY SONITA”.

    A recent research reveals that the market, but most of all the public opinion, welcomes a new concept of eco-sustainability connected with mass mobility. “FEATURE SEARCHED FOR BY SONITA”. The electric car is starting to find favour and appreciation with people, but still has to face non inconsiderable challenges in order to be successful in the world economic scene. We have underlined the importance of a reasonable price together with lightness, safety and eco-sustainability for catalysing the general attention and for affecting the quality of a good electric vehicle.

    Another crucial point of the matter is represented by the costs of production and components, which define the marketing price. Until now, this factor seems to be
  • an insurmountable obstacle; in fact it is almost impossible to find an electric vehicle which has a final price accessible to the common people or, most of all, to the businesses which would widely use it if equipped with working features.

    The lowering of the fixed costs for businesses would shake that ecological conscience which is very talked about but can’t succeed in taking off in practice.

    To sum up, the basic point of the matter, connected to large-scale production and marketing, is the pressing need to obtain a light, safe, durable and eco-sustainable vehicle, having a reasonable price, possibly realized with recycled and mostly recyclable materials. “ALL FEATURES SEARCHED FOR BY SONITA”.

    These are the preconditions required by the market and by a real sustainable mobility. There are the necessary technologies and possibilities and the general interest is attentive. So what is missing to obtain a quality product which has all this essential requirements? A higher range and a pleasant and acceptable speed. Also these factors have made great progress during the last years. “THIS IS ANOTHER FEATURE SEARCHED FOR BY SONITA TOGETHER WITH THE INDUSTRIES ALLIED TO CAR MANUFACTURING OF TURIN, WITH THE GROUP FORMED BY START-UP BUSINESSES CREATED BY REGIONE PIEMONTE AND

    On the market there are vehicles having batteries with a good duration of charge which allows a sufficient margin of travel. Their speeds are in line with the standard use of the product. This situation promotes the study of alternative mobility solutions able to solve the growing problems of congestion, pollution and lack of space which trouble most of the cities of the industrialized world. The people begin to understand that the complex system of the urban mobility can be controlled only if an effective mass transport system is assisted by innovative systems which have the task of enter contexts where the present means cannot be any more effective and objectively sustainable.

    In short, our planet, which has been overexploited by the present mobilization and industrialization systems, cannot hold out much longer following this direction. Therefore it is necessary and inevitable to clamp down on this situation with resolution in order not to arrive to the famous point of no return. If, from now to 2020, one for every 5 new cars was an electric one, 10% of the Italian car fleet would be made of ecological cars which don't discharge smog or greenhouse gas, saving more than 5 billion litres of petrol (today the yearly consumption is about
  • 13 billion litres). And if the new plug-in car fleet used renewable energy sources instead of the traditional power plants, our country would reduce the greenhouse gas emission of about 6 billion tons, corresponding to 1.1% of the national total.

    Fewer petrol engines means less carbon dioxide which modifies the climate and less atmospheric pollution which threatens our lungs. But for this kind of progress it is necessary to do political and administrative choices aimed to infrastructure development.

    Serious and effective projects are essential to avoid the collapse of the ecological sustainability. There are a lot of good ideas and opportunities, but not much courage to launch out into feasible programs, most of all the part of the institutions. Suffice is to consider all those situations where the present mobility system could and should be addressed to a suitable product having a minimal or no environmental impact. Public Administration, great industrial complexes, big city centres, transport systems and many other contexts could make use and enjoy this alternative mobility.

    During the last years, in several conventions all over the world the topic under
  • discussion has been the global mobility. The sustainability of a mass mobility has been approved by great events and researches made by important public institutions, returning the one and only verdict: we can’t and mustn't go on this way.

    The green mobility and the electric car are the only sheet anchor able to mitigate the problem of greenhouse gas emissions. The indubitable data are right before everybody’s eyes:
    SKY-HIGH PRICE OF PETROL. The first signal is the petrol cost which is slowly reaching 2 euros per litre. And the fluctuation of the crude oil price tends to speed up this growth. “FEATURE SEARCHED FOR BY SONITA”.

    CITIES FREE FROM SMOG. Much of the mobility requests come from urban traffic, the sector where the plug-in car can play its trump car. This trend can go hand in hand with the development of the car sharing and the electric car fleets, helping to reduce the pollutant emissions which compel the mayors to hold up the traffic or to impose the circulation with alternate number plates. Moreover, in Italy the number of kilometres covered by each car is decreasing, and the competition of high-speed rails is very strong in some sections. “FEATURE SEARCHED FOR

    FINES OR INCENTIVES? The third factor in favour of the electric cars development is the fact that the Italian market (48 million vehicles, of which 36 million cars) is particularly interesting from the point of view of low carbon mobility, since we are running the risk of paying very high fines to Europe due to the repeated overshooting of the fine particulate matter ceiling fixed by the Community legislation. The same amount, if used for providing incentives for the carbon free mobility, would allow to reach important objectives for reducing smog and greenhouse gas emissions. “FEATURE SEARCHED FOR BY SONITA”.

    JOB CREATION. In order to produce more than 360,000 electric cars about 35,000 jobs would be required every year, irrespective of the allied activities. This is a strategic sector for the Italian industry, which has been overtaken in the race toward the electric car but could make a recovery taking advantage of its long leadership in the little cars invention, particularly suitable for the town. “FEATURE SEARCHED FOR BY SONITA”.

    THE WALLET. Such an extraordinary result for the environment goes along with a great saving for the customer: today about 2,200 euros are necessary to cover
  • 15,000 km. With an electric car the yearly expense would be not higher than 300 euros, considering the current energy cost. We are talking a saving of 1,900 euros a year: 85% less. “FEATURE SEARCHED FOR BY SONITA”.

    A SOUND INVESTMENT. The electric cars are much expensive than the traditional ones, of course. But it is a very quickly amortizable investment. The list price difference between a Renault Megane (the basic version costs 20,000 euros) and a Fluence (the most similar model costs 27,000 euros) is 7,000 euros. Saving 1,900 euros a year (160 a month), the expense is amortized inside of four years (44 months). Of course, at present the performances of an electric car aren't the same of an internal combustion engine: but even the pollution rate is very different. “FEATURE SEARCHED FOR BY SONITA”.

    These young people will be trained within the project called "DIVENTO IMPRENDITORE DEL MADE IN ITALY” (I WILL BE AN ENTREPRENEUR OF MADE IN ITALY PRODUCTS), A REVOLUTION IN THE WORLD OF WORK, and they have a great incentive: the opportunity to become partners of SONITA ESTERO as instructors. ALL PARTNERS AND NO MORE EMPLOYEES!

  • necessary to supply power to the electric cars is produced by renewable sources, there will be another push to the revolution promised by the electric mobility:
    - If an electric car uses energy produced by coal-fired power plants, about 1,821 kilograms of CO2 (carbon dioxide) yearly will be discharged into the atmosphere.
    - Of this energy comes from a combined cycle-power station, 824 kilograms of CO2 will be discharged.
    - Obviously, zero emission with solar or wind energy.
    - As a whole, 3.3 million plug-in vehicles receiving power by natural gas power plants will produce 2.8 million tons of CO2 yearly; 6.1 million tons with coal; zero with renewable sources.

    The Project EEElcar is born from these simple lines of reasoning, based on real and verifiable data. An actual and ambitious project addressed to a new ecological and global way of thinking. An idea unique of its kind, which combines a great industrial project attentive to general working requirements with a green philosophy without precedent and which try to close an eco-sustainable circle without equal in the world to this day. This is the starting and arrival point!
Thomas Edison and a electrical car in the 1913 (National Museum of American History)



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