Sometimes 1 + 1 ≠ 2. When the Aptera 2e was spotted at the Zap Jonway Beijing Motor Show display, assumptions were made (by us) that the composite-bodied craft was to be reborn as a product of that company. It will not. Oh, it will phoenix alright. And though the chassis will indeed be made by the Jonway Group in China, the vehicle is not directly affiliated with Zap Jonway.
Here's the deal. Aptera USA – they were originally going with Zaptera USA, but changed their minds after seeing the reaction to our previous post – bought up all the old Aptera assets and plan on moving swiftly to bring the three-wheeler to market, perhaps as early as the first quarter of 2013. The completed chassis will be brought to the U.S. from China, where it will have its electric drivetrain and other equipment installed. The new Aptera vehicle is said to be based on the design that participated in the Progressive Automotive X-Prize, known internally as the SO-1.
That configuration, if you'll remember, boasted a 20-kWh battery pack from A123 Systems and put out 110 horsepower (82 kW) and 232 pound-feet of torque using an electric motor from Remy. Its range is thought to be about 114 miles.
The company plans to revive the previous Aptera website and begin a new reservation system, giving former place holders first shot. The price should be in the $25,000 neighborhood and sales will not be restricted to California. Indeed, they want to eventually sell internationally.
Prospective buyers and the curious will get a chance to look over the vehicle in person later this year when the first Aptera showroom opens at the Railroad Square Village in Santa Rosa, CA. An official press release will be issued soon that should clarify the company's intent. We look forward to learning more details and wish the new Aptera every success.