FastCompany had an article on the Elio, a 3 wheeled car that will attempt to revolutionize the workday commute with its almost shocking combination of price and fuel-efficiency. Paul Elio, the founder of the company, used the statistic that 93% of Americans commute to work alone as basis for designing a car to maximize fuel efficiency.
The goal of the Elio is to get as aerodynamic and lightweight as possible. the Elio seats two people, but in a “front and back” configuration instead of side by side. With its reduced weight and team-oriented manufacturing techniques, Elio is able to create a vehicle that gets over 80 miles to the gallon, with a $6800 price point.
In addition to its innovative design, Elio is also rolling out an innovative pricing structure. Instead of the usual down payment/trade-in plus financing route, the Elio may offer a payment plan that offers no monthly payment- but a gas card that submits a payment as an extra $20 whenever it is swiped at the pump.
The Elio is a pretty bold concept for the commuter-only car, and with it’s low price and financing options, it may be able to break through as the weekday alternative to the family SUV. If the Elio delivers as promised, it will be half as expensive as even a base-model Smart Car, and offer twice the fuel efficiency. As someone who’s tired of putting $60 of gas into my 15 year old Jeep every week, I’d definitely be interested in giving the Elio a look when it hits the market next year.
I WANT ONE. $6,800, 80 mpg, and freaky-cool looking.