Detroit Electric: Back and Better than Ever?

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Until just recently, electric vehicles were widely regarded as creatures of the future.  Like flying cars, rocket-propelled shoes, and robots that do housework—we regularly thought of EVs as things more suited to George Jetson than Fred Flinstone.  What we didn’t know—at least what I didn’t know—was that Henry Ford’s wife was driving around in an electric car in the days of the Model T.  In fact, as the company that built Mrs. Ford’s EV—Detroit Electric—points out, electric cars were more popular in the early 1900s than they are today.  Unfortunately, as time went on and petrol engines became cleaner and cheaper, both the electric car and Detroit Electric went the way of the dinosaur.  After a long 74 year hibernation, however, Detroit Electric is making a splash in the automotive industry once again—this time it’s with their SP:01 electric sports car.

The SP:01 was introduced this past week at the Fisher Building in Detroit where company chairman and CEO Albert Lam, past president of the Lotus Engineering Group, talked about the possibility of Detroit Electric manufacturing two additional models before 2014 comes to a close—likely a sedan and a hatchback.  One of the models, he suggested, might even fall within the price range of an every-day use vehicle at around $30,000 to $35,000. In contrast, pricing for the SP:01 is expected to be closer to the $135,000 mark when it enters production in August (first delivery scheduled for September).

As you can see from the above photo, the SP:01 is clearly Lotus-based. To keep costs down, Detroit Electric is expected to source the majority of the SP:01’s parts from other automakers.  Though the automakers themselves have not yet been identified—according to an AutoBlog report—the company will make an announcement about a strategic partnership at the upcoming Shanghai Motor Show.  Until then, you can read more about Detroit Electric and the SP:01 here.

  • Brittany Larson

    Brittany is an environmental and automotive enthusiast based in Las Vegas, Nevada. A graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison, she currently moonlights as a law student at UNLV. You can contact her via Twitter @brittlarson10.

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