An attempt by two French engineers to drive a Citroen C-Zero battery-electric vehicle around the world hasn't been lost in translation... yet.
Xavier Degon and Antonin Guy, who started what they call the Electric Odyssey in Strasbourg, France in February, reached the Rockies this month, with plans to continue on to Asia after reaching the U.S. West Coast.
The two are planning for the eight-month trip to cover 17 countries, about 15,000 miles and about 250 Euros ($327 U.S. at today's exchange rates) in electricity consumption. The two drivers are traveling in 70-mile increments, relying on supporters – in addition to restaurants, gas stations and other retailers – for recharges, according to Wired. The reason? To "promote the image of the electric vehicles" while sharing information and energy with people around the world, according to the Electric Odyssey website.
Degon and Guy reached the U.S. via ship in early March. The drivers say they've had success finding recharging locations across the U.S. – even in many rural communities – but expect the task to become more difficult once they reach Asia, mostly because of language barriers.
The C-Zero is the sister vehicle to the Mitsubishi i-MiEV. That car debuted in Japan in April 2010 and started sales in Europe early last year. The American version, called the i, debuted stateside last November and is considered by the EPA to be the most fuel-efficient production vehicle (based on the miles per gallon equivalent ratings) sold in the U.S.