Milner Motors, an American company founded by James Milner, has developed the ElectriCar, a 4-door, 4-seat, 4-wheel, plug-in hybrid electric car. This lightweight, strong car is designed to be as aerodynamic as possible and can operate for two hours on batteries, enabling an average 95% of daily driving to be handled by the electric drive. If needed, an onboard gasoline engine turns on automatically to allow for longer trips. Milner's goal is to achieve a 5 times increase in fuel economy, better than 100 MPG, by using batteries and by implementing existing technology.
The ElectriCar is both stable and quiet thanks to the location of its wheels outside of the vehicle's body. Three main design issues were tackled in the car’s production process. First, it was necessary to find a way to reduce the car’s body structure weight while creating a strong and safe vehicle.The solution was inspired by Indianapolis race cars' aerodynamic shape and their steel cage construction. The ElectriCar weighs only 1250 lbs, requiring minimal power for easy acceleration.
The second issue was making the vehicle comfortable for everyday use while maintaining an aerodynamic design. Milner Motors' goal was to design a car that requires 5 HP or less to drive 60 MPH on level ground. The company managed to achieve this goal while keeping a very spacious interior, with 56" front shoulder room and back seat storage.
Finally, the company wanted to create an energy-efficient drive train. Reverse gear and 1st gear were removed to reduce friction. Alternatively, reverse driving is done via a reverse solenoid switch that reverses the polarity of the wires. The batteries store 15 kWh (that cost about $1 to be delivered) and a separate 20 hp rotary engine drives a generator to charge the batteries when needed. Each morning, the ElectriCar can be plugged into a household outlet for charging.
"We are currently building a driveable prototype of the ElectriCar to test handling, energy efficiency, and practicality. After the ElectriCar's capabilities have been proven, we will market the ElectriCar as a kit car. Then we will work on full Federal Government safety certification to bring the vehicle to the domestic U.S. market," explained the company.
The ElectriCar is estimated to cost under $40,000.
TFOT previously covered other advanced concept cars, such as the six-seater Air Car CityCat, which is equipped with a revolutionary dual-energy compressed air engine, achieving a fuel efficiency of 106 miles to the gallon, a new bio-fuel powered sports car named CCXR,and Honda's "PUYO" concept car that is designed as a corner-less, soft box that is both friendly to the environment and feels good to the touch.
More information on the ElectriCar can be found at Milner Motors' official website.