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Revealed: Solar powered family car

Think solar powered cars and you're probably picturing something futuristic. a one-seat concept built for speed that is unlikely to, ironically, see the light of day.

However, the Solar Team Eindhoven is ready to change that perception with the world's first solar-powered family car.

Stella (pictured. perhaps taking inspiration from A Streetcar Named Desire) is described as an energy positive car with room for four people, as well as boot space, intuitive steering and a range of 373miles.

Solar Powered Car Stella

The vehicle makes use of solar cells to generate more electricity on average than the car will use: with surplus electricity returned to the power grid.

It focuses on lightweight materials - including carbon and aluminium - and is designed to be ultra- fuel efficient. To further enhance fuel efficiency, the steering wheel will expand or contract when the vehicle is being driven too fast or too slowly.

Think the vehicle will never make it? Well, Solar Team Eindhoven has applied for the vehicle to be certified for official road use.

While it waits on that application however, the team will enter Stella into the Cruiser class of the World Solar Challenge which takes place in Australia this October. The event will see university teams from around the world compete in a 3,000km race through the Australian outback: and the Cruiser class relies on practical user-friendly solar cars rather than those built just for speed.

The event takes places from October 6-13.

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Paul Lucas

Filed under: Latest News, Green cars

1 comment

Patrick Trowbridge

This is an amazing achievement and the team is to be congratulated.

Two things spring to mind. I am 6 feet tall (1.80m) - it looks like anyone my height may have problems fitting in it. Also, hard to get a sense of how any spare solar generated electricity is returned to the grid. I am not an engineer so perhaps I am missing something.

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