Click above for a high-res gallery of the 2e

We asked Aptera earlier this week about whether or not they met their self-imposed deadline to have the first production 2e vehicle (formerly known as the Typ-1) out the door by January 16th. To refresh your memory, Aptera committed to delivering "the first production [2e]' by that date. We were told we'd get an update soon. Here it is.

According to Aptera, the first 2e vehicle did indeed leave the Vista, California factory this week. The press release (pasted after the jump), though, says that this vehicle is a pre-production model that "is equipped with a lithium-based battery and features a number of vehicle enhancements such as front wheel drive, aerodynamic side-mounted mirrors and wider door openings that make getting in and out of the vehicle much easier than with previous designs." So, the deadline was met, sort of. Aptera President and CEO Paul Wilbur said that "final refinements" are still coming before the actual first deliveries take place in October. Oh, and the price for one of these production models? Somewhere "between $25,000 and $45,000."

Related GalleryAptera 2e

[Source: Aptera]


PRESS RELEASE:

FIRST PRE-PRODUCTION ALL-ELECTRIC APTERA IS COMPLETE; FULL PRODUCTION AND DELIVERY
TO BEGIN IN OCTOBER

The 2e, Aptera's two-seat, three-wheel vehicle, gets the equivalent of more than 200 mile- per-gallon

VISTA, Calif. (Jan. 21, 2009) -- The initial pre-production all-electric model from Southern California vehicle manufacturer Aptera Motors had rolled out the door of its Vista, Calif. production facility. Known as the 2e, the brilliant white two-seat commuter vehicle is the first of a burgeoning fleet of Aptera vehicles that will undergo internal and external evaluations for fit, finish, performance and durability as preparation for full production in October.

The pre-production vehicle is equipped with a lithium-based battery and features a number of vehicle enhancements such as front wheel drive, aerodynamic side-mounted mirrors and wider door openings that make getting in and out of the vehicle much easier than with previous designs. The aerodynamically-inspired 2e will go from zero to 60 in under 10 seconds, top out at 90 mph and get the equivalent of more than 200 miles-per-gallon based on a standard EPA driving cycle. Though the vehicle is still nine months from completion, Aptera has already received nearly 4,000 deposits and the 2e is attracting its share of accolades, including recognition from TIME magazine as one of the "Best Inventions of 2008" and USA WEEKEND's proclamation as one of "2009's most intriguing innovations".

"We're getting close to finalizing our final prime-time vehicle, but there's still a lot of work to accomplish to manufacture an ultra-high efficiency vehicle," says Aptera President and CEO Paul Wilbur, who boasts more than 25 years of product planning and development, marketing and finance experience for Ford, Chrysler and other manufacturers. "Just look at the 2e and you understand that it's an aerodynamic marvel. We now have to make the final refinements in the upcoming months, squeezing out every ounce of positive performance, and then we'll have the first safe, affordable all-electric vehicle on the market."

With an expected cost between $25,000 and $45,000, and a driving range of more than 100 miles-per-charge, initial sales will solely be in California, with plans to distribute the Aptera to the rest of the United States by late 2010.

"With the 2e set to hit the streets later this year, and with additional models already on our drawing board, Aptera will create some 1,500 jobs and more than 100,000 vehicles in the next five years," says Aptera founder Steve Fambro. "We hope to change everyday driving forever by offering incomparable mileage and innovative technology at prices people can afford."

About Aptera
Aptera Motors (www.aptera.com), founded in 2004 to develop and build the safest, most energy efficient commuter vehicles on the road, begins volume production of its first vehicle, the all-electric 2e, in 2009. Utilizing streamlined aerodynamic design, lightweight composite structures and unique drive systems, Aptera delivers vehicles that are attainable and efficient. The company operates two Southern California facilities in north San Diego County, where it designs, engineers and manufactures the vehicles and their composite systems to create an exceptionally strong, sleek body.