Lightyear 0, the world's first mass-produced solar electric vehicle has been unveiled at Sharjah Research, Technology and Innovation Park (SRTIP).
The presentation of the vehicle followed the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between SRTIP and Lightyear, a Dutch high-tech company.
According to media reports, the car is twice as efficient as the Tesla Model S, which is comparable in its class, and consumes only 1,500 kilowatt-hours per year.
Lightyear 0 is ready for production and can run for a few months in the summer before it needs to be plugged into a communal charger or home power socket. Its top speed is 160 kilometres per hour and it takes 10 seconds to accelerate from zero to 100 kilometres per hour.
The car costs $244,000 in Europe and will officially go on sale next year. However, a price has not yet been set for the pending release in the UAE.
CEO of SRTI Park, Hussain Al Mahmoudi said:
This is a great day for SRTIP as we are the first in this part of the world to unveil this unique car that is making waves globally.
The Lightyear 0 solar-powered vehicle will be manufactured in Finland, where five square metres of solar panels are built into the roof and bonnet of the vehicle.
The car has a record resistance coefficient of 0.175 (Cd). This enables a more efficient use of energy, giving drivers more range and less dependence on electric charging.
As part of the collaboration, Lightyear and SRTI Park intend to organise university research exchange programmes on solar-powered electric vehicles, as well as promote policy initiatives to develop EVs in the country.