Ethiopia may not spring immediately to mind as the most likely market for electric vehicles – its electricity system is not wholly reliable – but that is not stopping Freestyle PLC from building the Solaris Elettra at its facility in Legetafo, on the outskirts of Addis Ababa. Already in the solar business for 15 years, the firm feels that the East African country's hydro power development will make it a natural for this technology. Operating under the slogan, "From a green country to a green world," Freestyle envisions eventually exporting the car to other countries in the region.

The car itself is being assembled from parts sourced from China, Korea and Singapore and looks like, well, let's just say it looks like what's in the picture. With a top speed of 80 kilometers an hour (50 miles per hour) it wouldn't be a threat to a Tesla at a stop light either, though that is not really the point of the vehicle. More important is the price, which will be somewhere between $13,000 and $15,000 depending on the specific model chosen. The government may drop an import fee which would bring the cost closer to the $10,000 mark for the 5.0 model and the company is considering a credit system to help make it more attainable. It is said they are producing six vehicles a week but should be able to bump that production up to 30 in a few months. There does seem to be some amount of interest in the vehicle, despite the lack of a proper website. It can quietly boast its own fan page on Facebook. Hit the jump for video of local news coverage featuring high amperage action some shots of the Elettra in motion.

[Source: BBC / The Reporter]