- MemberAugust 10, 2021 at 8:20 am
Hi Aptera team !
I am really exited to have ordered my Aptera today !
I am french , so i need to know if you will get COC for europeen countries
and use specials components to be ok for outlets and voltage.
- MemberAugust 10, 2021 at 8:20 am
I have a preorder but I live in Sweden. Any news about deliveries to Europe? Can I expect having the car next year?
- ModeratorAugust 10, 2021 at 3:16 pm
Foreign deliveries are likely to be later than next year.
- MemberAugust 13, 2021 at 8:43 pm
A few days ago I posted a few thoughts on modifications to the design so that Aptera could fit into the L5e-A vehicle class over on Reddit, and thought I’d bring those comments here, with a few edits.
Realistically, I don’t think the first model will actually be sellable in any region following UNECE vehicle regulations – you can’t make a three-wheel category M1 or N1 vehicle, they’re forced into category L5, and category L vehicles are maximum 2 m wide, 4 m long, both of which they exceed.
The length (currently 4.37 m)… shortening that simply will increase Cd and decrease solar panel area, no way around it.
The width (currently 2.24 m)… apparently they don’t actually need such a wide track for stability (source from the FAQ spreadsheet), they need it for aerodynamic reasons, to keep the wheel pods away from the body shell to minimize Cd.
The ways to deal with that:
- Narrow the tires and then the wheel pods, which would reduce width and frontal area, at the expense of front traction, although Cd should be relatively neutral. Realistically, I’m thinking about 145 mm wide tires are about the narrowest they could practically go, from the currently specified 195 mm wide. (125 mm wide LRR tires exist, but only on 13″ wheels – AFAIK the Elaphe motors that Aptera’s using require a minimum of 15″ rim size – and only designed for a vehicle half the weight with an 80 km/h limiter.) That only gets you at most 100 mm of width back (this assuming you keep the inside edge of the tires’ location fixed, and therefore reduce the track width by 50 mm), though, and you need to get 235.2 to fit in the 2 m maximum.
- Narrow the body shell, which would reduce interior space, safety, and potentially solar panel area, but would reduce frontal area. Shouldn’t affect Cd significantly. Worth noting that Aptera ‘s moving the seats inboard by 25 mm (each I think – source from Transport Evolved), so that means there’s 50 mm of free real estate if Noir’s side impact space was acceptable. Now we’re to 150 mm of the 235.2 mm needed (and may be able to take more of that).
- Bring the wheel pods closer in to the body. This increases Cd due to accelerating the air between the wheel pods and the body shell, although it might slightly reduce frontal area due to reducing suspension arm length. It also reduces stability, but that should remain within acceptable parameters, and widens the turning circle. (There may be a point where it makes sense to take a frontal area hit and fair the wheels and suspension into the bodyshell as well to keep Cd down, instead of having separate pods.)
There’s also a couple things I don’t like about the 145 mm LRR tire selection – 145/65R15’s two applications are the front tires on the 450 Smart ForTwo and the Mitsubishi i-MiEV, both of which are RWD, so none of the 145/65R15 tires on the market are designed to be drive tires. If going for i-MiEV tires, though, it may also be reasonable to downsize the rear tire from 195/45R16 (or the potential for something 205 wide) to 175/60R15, which is the rear size for the i-MiEV, and therefore is available from the same vendors. That’d save a touch of frontal area to offset additional drag elsewhere.
A couple other thoughts I didn’t put into my Reddit comment: with 9″ of ground clearance for the belly, there may be potential to drop the bodyshell 2-3″, which would reduce frontal area for the rear wheel further, as well as restore at least some lost stability from narrowing things.
Worth noting that every modification other than narrower tires and wheel pods may well require a different bodyshell – hence my stating that I don’t expect the first Aptera to be available in UNECE regions. (And, the current FAQ does hint at this outcome.)
I’m not sure if the Elaphe motors are narrow enough to support a narrower tire – if not, then that option wouldn’t be practical without a motor redesign (and subsequent reduction in performance, although the European market may well accept that reduction in performance – a 0-100 km/h time of 8 seconds is decently quick there as I understand, where a 0-60 MPH time of 8 seconds is slow here).
- MemberAugust 13, 2021 at 9:05 pm
…so I decided to do a quick and dirty photo edit of a pic on the site, to show what an Aptera narrowed to 2 m wide solely through bringing the wheel pods in would look like.
It’s an ugly one, as I didn’t address the background properly.
At that narrow, you actually would need to fair the front wheels into the body instead (and then you’d want to consider going even narrower to minimize frontal area, at which point stability starts becoming more of a concern, as well as footwell packaging).
Also, it looks like, based on counting pixels (582 pixels between the outer edges of the wheel pods, 454 pixels between the outer edges of the body shell), the body shell is about 68.6″/1.74 m wide.
- MemberAugust 14, 2021 at 2:08 pm
What is the width across the front wheels?
Aptera is 88″ wide. We realize this may be wider than local regulations permit for some of our global customers and we working through this process with industry experts to ensure we can make Aptera available in Europe and the UK.
- MemberAugust 14, 2021 at 10:56 am
A caveat, this is personal observation and does not necessarily represent the Aptera management approach
I am sure Aptera will address Euro specification compliance at the right time in their development plan with thorough research, consultation with appropriate advisors at the government level, and apply their exceptional, and proven creativity to formulate the most efficient and cost effective design for a European version as they have done with the current Aptera.
I would bet, that in that process, they would offer the opportunity for enthusiasts to submit suggestions for consideration and validation within their engineering process. Especially those in the EU.
But, until that time comes, I would like to see them concentrate all of their efforts on successfully bringing the current version to market and generating revenue to make their future plans, to include a European version possible.
- MemberAugust 18, 2021 at 4:09 am
I personally hope they don’t make any compromises in the aerodynamic design for the european market. Hopefully they can find another way, fitting it into one category or another. If there is no vehicle category where it fits in the EU regulations, I would like to believe this is a major oversight which should be corrected on the regulatory side, not circumvented by redesign.
- MemberAugust 18, 2021 at 12:57 pm
Hej Fred. Aptera said it would deliver anywhere. If you’re in Sweden that likely means an extra month logistically. It would also need to be a narrower Aptera variant for European specs. Aerodynamics would likely not suffer much but it may come at the expense of a little bit of stability, though some of that may also be mitigatable. Let’s see what the engineers come up with. My thoughts are that if your reservation number is anywhere beyond 17000 you’re likely to see your vehicle some time in 2023 if you’re in Europe.
- MemberAugust 18, 2021 at 1:54 pm
I did not feel so excited about a product since I first encountered these unaffordable white Apple Computers through a shop window in the early 90s. Really hope I can own an Aptera in maybe 2023. Living in Hamburg (North Germany) compared to the average European city car it seems to be a fair amount too wide and obviously 50 cm longer than my current elderly Peugeot 206cc. But width (and maybe shade) are my main concerns, especially when you got to drive through roadworks with sometimes very narrow highway lanes. So I hope for a somewhat narrower version. Having no garage or direct power access, rare charging, and outdoor parking can be an advantage for my usecase.
- MemberAugust 20, 2021 at 5:43 pm
For all European enthusiasts. You can check Chris Anthony’s last Q&A, the one on Investment held on the 19th. He spoke briefly about a European Aptera. Essentially, they have people working on the best conceptual approach to meet volume Aptera deliveries to Europe. However, there are small number exceptions for cars not meeting the European standards. So perhaps some Apteras can slip through, but this is not in any plan. Engineering is now complete for the U.S. Beta version of the Aptera and they are starting the build activity for the Betas.
My opinion only, but with the effort focused on advancing the U.S. prototypes with the goal of end of year production ready, it will be the number one priority for both the development and fledgling production teams.
There is no published target/schedule for other than U.S. production. Around 10,000 give or take a few reservations will be filled first. The order of producing Apteras for delivery are in Chris Anthony’s Q&A from the webinar on the 19th in the forum.
I am sure all of the above is subject to change as a lot of external factors outside of Aptera’s control are in play.
I have faith and trust in the management and engineering team that they will keep their eye on the ball and work diligently and as fast as possible to insure that everyone who wants an Aptera will get one as soon as possible regardless of where they reside.
- MemberAugust 26, 2021 at 6:39 am
I am in Australia and the 2m wide restriction applies. I am now researching why Aptera cannot be classified as an M passenger vehicle. Autocycle is a US classification and there is an interesting discussion here https://www.ncsl.org/research/transportation/transportation-review-autocycles.aspx. Aptera has yet to resolve all the issues mentioned in this article. I believe they have employed a specialist to resolve the “Harmonisation” problem. Hope they can get it done before my order comes up.
My research so far indicates that many autocycles do not comply to safety requirements of M passenger vehicles but in Australia I have not discovered any reference to the number of wheels. I think Aptera may comply to the safety requirements. Do you have a link which specifically excludes 3 wheelers from being a M class car?
- MemberAugust 26, 2021 at 7:11 am
Just curious, why does Australia have the same width restriction as Europe? My recollections about Australian roads is that they were pretty much the same width as American roads. I get it about Europe, there are medieval streets in Italy that you have to walk down sideways but Australia was founded after the US and they don’t have any medieval streets.
- MemberAugust 26, 2021 at 5:42 pm
Australia is a signatory to the UNECE. My reading of the regulations is that someone has mostly done a cut and paste job between Australian Design Rules, ADR, and UNECE regulations and they got the 2m rule in the L class vehicles. A notable exception is that UNECE seems to require M Class vehicles to have 4 wheels. In the ADRs I have found no mention about 4 wheels for M Class vehicles.
As for wide cars, Australia does have wide open spaces and exceptionally wide roads especially where road trains (53.5m long usually 3 trailers and 2.5m wide) operate, and we do have urban areas and shopping center car parks. The widest vehicle you commonly see in Australia is a Toyota Landcruiser which is 183cm wide excluding mirrors. These often don’t fit in carpark spaces. The width of an Aptera is a concern, but if the design improves efficiency, and delivers the claimed performance I want one.
- MemberAugust 26, 2021 at 6:56 pm
This document says light vehicles (below 4.5Tons) can be 2.5m wide in NSW.
Am I looking at the wrong thing?
- MemberAugust 26, 2021 at 7:50 pm
In order to import a Motor Vehicle into Australia, we need gain approval from the Department of Infrastructure, Transport, Regional Development and Communication. Part of the approval process is compliance to Australian Design Rules (ADR). Once this is done we can import our Aptera into Australia. Then we take it to our State Authority. NSW as you point out allows light vehicles to be 2.5m wide and further into the document I found this:
“Car means a motor vehicle built mainly to carry people that:
• Seats not more than 9 adults (including the driver), and
• Has a body commonly known as a sedan, station wagon, coupe, convertible, or roadster,
• Has 3 or more wheels. “
It appears that NSW may well register an Aptera for road use but we still need Federal Approval. The ADRs have a 3 wheel category which has a 2m width limit but as I stated earlier the passenger car category doesn’t mention the number of wheels. Hopefully there is a way.
3 wheelers in Australia which have steering wheels and seats are rare. The Morgan 3 Wheeler is one and reading their web site it took 2 years to get approval. At the current pace Aptera may be ready to deliver our cars before that. Aptera is setting up an Ambassador program which I hope will support us in applying for Australian approval.
- MemberSeptember 4, 2021 at 6:02 pm
Regarding width, what about making the wheel covers more similar to for example Arcimoto (https://cdn.arcimoto.com/wp/20201221080720/Red.jpg)? Seems like the easiest solution to me, not sure how much of a difference in width and aerodynamic properties it would cause though.
- MemberSeptember 7, 2021 at 8:26 am
I recall Chris saying something in one of the webinars that they might get an exemption to the width regulations due to being a low volume manufacturer. My concern is that they’re thinking of this as a solution to the legal problem rather than reducing the width to solve the practical problem.
Here’s a link to the relevant section… https://youtu.be/yIuv_igjfLI?t=2874
- MemberSeptember 7, 2021 at 8:41 am
This is exactly my concern as well. I feel connected to the whole Aptera philosophy, design, efficiency approach, solar and so on, investing in it, but actually it dawns me that this car is inpractical in my area if it remains unchanged for European market. To put it in other words if I find a parking lot, the tire pants might be hit by some cyclist on the first night out … or feel squeezed on a narrow highway lane work site.
- MemberSeptember 8, 2021 at 10:03 am
As a practical matter I don’t see how they can think about exports for several years. Aptera has avoided raising huge amounts of money so that they can maintain control. Rivian by contrast has raised $10.5B and they are about to do an $80B IPO which will allow them to jump into all markets simultaneously, Lucid has raised a billion from the Saudi’s and another $4.5 in with their SPAC, which is enough for them to go all out. Aptera by contrast has raised pennies. In the next couple of years “export” for Aptera means anything out if California. They have to figure out how to provide service and how to provide test drives in regions outside of their own, that’s going to be a big task for them given how little money they’ve raised.
- MemberSeptember 8, 2021 at 10:43 am
I wonder if any of the Beta or Gamma models will be constructed to EU specs? If they’ve even worked that out by now.
- MemberSeptember 13, 2021 at 4:21 pm
88 inch or 2235 mm isn’t exceptionally wide by European standards. The total width (mirrors included) of some cars that are popular in here in Europe ;
Audi Q7 2212 mm , BMW X5 2218 mm , BMW X6 2212 mm , BMW X7 2218 mm , Citroën Spacetourer/Peugeot Traveller/Opel Zafira Life 2204 mm , Land Rover Discovery 2220 mm , Range Rover Sport 2220 mm , Range Rover 2220 mm , Mercedes V – Class 2249 mm , Renault Trafic 2283 mm , Tesla Model X 2271 mm , Volkswagen Transporter 2297 mm.
I don’t see a practical or regulatory problem.
- MemberSeptember 14, 2021 at 7:31 am
That’s an interesting point… I didn’t realize these cars with mirrors were so wide. I keep thinking it’s a little bit of a problem then I think it’s no problem then I go back and forth in my head…
I think I just need to drive one and see a bunch of youtube reviews.
- MemberSeptember 14, 2021 at 7:52 am
What’s the width without mirrors? Mirrors don’t matter, they are up high and take very little space. When parking two cars next to each other they don’t interfere with the doors of the other car.
- MemberSeptember 15, 2021 at 6:50 am
The average width of over 250 car models including mirrors is 2050 mm (80.7″) and excluding 1812 mm (71,3″). Source: German motorist club.
Two “normal” cars on that list are wider than an Aptera but only with mirrors out: Renault Trafic III Combi (2285 mm) and Mercedes V-Klasse (2255). Tesla Model S (2200 mm) is almost as wide as the Aptera (2235).
In my road I guess it would feel a bit like parking a bus. And people are sensible about cars claiming too much space in the city over here (if they are not brutal against them). So yes: I would welcome a less wide European version but do not expect it though.
- MemberSeptember 16, 2021 at 11:14 am
I live in the west of Ireland in a rural area. The 2.2m width is a problem. Not just a regulatory problem, a driving problem. I find the 2m width of the Model 3 to be uncomfortable to drive. I’d honestly prefer a 1.8m width on most of the roads I drive.
I put my deposit down on the Aptera hoping to switch to it from my Model 3 for two main reasons: a smaller car and range. Being an even wider car is a problem for me.
If some folks on the Aptera design team want to pop over to Ireland I’m happy to drive them around and they can see how uncomfortable a 2m wide car is. They’ll see what I mean the first time they encounter a tractor/bus/lorry on L and R roads – and quite a few N roads.
- MemberDecember 7, 2021 at 12:45 pm
Actually I was wrong – a Model 3 is 1.85m wide. And it really is uncomfortable to drive on many roads.
- MemberDecember 7, 2021 at 1:26 pm
Definitely an understandable problem. They may need to make an international version with a worse drag (closer wheel pods), expensive retractable pods (only useful for parking, or more fundamental changes (smaller battery, no center console etc)
- MemberDecember 7, 2021 at 8:37 pm
Size matters in dense city environment, lane parking and and constant narrow highway lanes due to construction work (left lane 2.1 m, right lane wider of course). I sense it is simply a hard sell as a day to day commuter car in its current form in Europe. For me in my Hamburg neighbourhood it is sometimes awkward to pass by an approaching SUV with my small Peugeot (74.8” incl. mirrors). My hope is that there will be a European micro factory that builds a 10% smaller Aptera, keeping it within 2×4 m (78.7×157.5”) to qualify as a trike (Maximum for European vehicle class L7e). This consequently includes more fundamental changes like the ones Curtis mentions. I really want to sail this thing.
- MemberOctober 21, 2021 at 7:03 am
It’s going to be a long time before they will be ready to export to the EU. We are hoping that they will start US production by the middle of next year but that will be small numbers, most of us who are on the list won’t see a car before 2023. I hope I’m being overly pessimistic about those dates but I wouldn’t bet on it being any earlier. For the EU they have to change from CCS1 to CCS2 which won’t be very hard. The open question has to do with the width of the Aptera and whether it will be legal on EU roads, there has been some discussion about that in this forum. Have you looked at the dimensions, do you think they will work for you?
- MemberOctober 21, 2021 at 7:25 am
yes , it will take long time since to be legal and compatible with EU standard
my action is to participate to this project and support it ! ????????
about dimensions , you speak about dimensions of the car to be legal in France ??
- MemberOctober 21, 2021 at 7:43 am
The Aptera is very wide because of the placement the wheels and skirts which was done for aerodynamics and for stability, it’s about the same width as a Ford F150 pickup truck. American parking spaces are laid out for pickup trucks because those are the most popular vehicles in the US. The lanes on our highways are also wider than they are in Europe and of course we don’t have any medieval cities with their narrow streets. On another thread someone from Europe said that there was an EU regulation that limited the width of passenger vehicles and that the Aptera exceeded it, I’m not in a position to comment on that, I’m just repeating what I read on this forum.
One place where Aptera will have an easier time in the EU is for side mirrors. Aptera is planning on using cameras instead of mirrors because there is a significant drag reduction if you use cameras. Side cameras are legal in the EU but not in the US. They are hoping that the US rule will be changed but it’s unlikely that it will happen in a timely manner.
- MemberOctober 22, 2021 at 12:07 pm
There is F150 pick-up alteady in France, so vehicule Can be large and légal.
Yes , WE will have some problèms with narrow streats into médiéval cities ????????????
Good news if mirror caméra légal in EU , i see on Honda E , it is great !
There is spécial advantage for 3 wheels in EU , perhaps it will easier to get COC .
For exemple , this 3 wheels is légal
- MemberNovember 4, 2021 at 7:15 am
Hi Aptera, can you shed some light on the requirements for homologation in the EU? What are the biggest challenges there, and how do you intend to deal with them?
- MemberNovember 4, 2021 at 7:26 am
Hi Aptera, in the charging section of the Specs2022 document, there is mentioning of 50 kW DC charging and 110 V single-phase AC charging:
In Europe, 3-phase charging is standard, and there are two levels of it:
3 phases x 230 V x 16 A = 11 kW and 3 phases x 230 V x 32 A = 22 kW
Can you confirm that the Aptera will offer 11 kW AC 3-phase charging for Europe? I think that can be regarded as a minimum requirement. It would be very nice if Aptera could charge with 22 kW AC, too. Given the extreme efficiency of the Aptera, 22 kW would add approx. 200 miles of range in one hour, which is pretty close to “fast charging”! Public or semi-public AC charging stations are far more common, than DC chargers, and much cheaper.
- MemberNovember 4, 2021 at 7:30 am
FYI – Aptera doesn’t pop on here super often but sometimes an employee does.
This is a very common question and there are multiple answers:
- MemberDecember 1, 2021 at 10:32 am
I found this reddit post which I find very interesting:
The way I read it is that you first have to find an insurance company willing to issue a valid insurance for something like Aptera, before you can even start attacking a local ADAC, at least in Germany. Which makes me think that a first battle that we have to win is with insurance people?
- MemberDecember 1, 2021 at 12:20 pm
The answer of Gemany’s Traffic Department cited by the reddit post is really funny (or sad) as it shows that they did not care at all about the question or were not able to understand it. They were referring to the vehicle class L2e (tricycles with auxiliarxy motor, max. 4 kW, max. 45 km/h) whereas the Aptera clearly falls into the category L5e-A:
L5e: Three-wheeled motor vehicle with three symmetrically arranged wheels with a displacement of over 50 cm³ for internal combustion engines, 15 kW for electric drive, top speed more than 45 km/h.
L5e-A: Vehicle designed primarily for the transport of people; (including four-wheeled vehicles with narrow gauge on one axle)
Well, I live in Switzerland, not in Germany (hence not EU), but we adopt many EU regulations so that most vehicle categories (including L5e-A) are the same, or very similar.
Now the good news regarding insurance companies in Europe: it was only yesterday when after 2 working days of waiting I got a provisional quote from my insurance company for what the Aptera is. Third party liability insurance costs 25% of what I pay now for driving an old Ford Focus (weak motor, 55 kW), plus part insurance cover that will remain about the same.
- MemberDecember 7, 2021 at 3:07 pm
Building A giga factory in Germany is a pain, six months delay. Building a giga factory in China is a gentle breeze, ask Elon. So away with all those rediculous rules and regulations. Bad for business…. And if safety requirements are met in the US, then Europe should follow without any complaints..
- MemberJanuary 28, 2022 at 8:47 am
Regulation is used as a trade barrier as well as serving to protect the public. For cars, why are separate crash tests required for each market. The physics is the same, if the various regulatory agencies would get together and set a single international standard it would not only save money but that standard could be tougher than any individual countries standard because the manufacturers would only have to pay for one test. Why doesn’t the US accept the EU regulation on headlights and side view camera’s? How hard would it be for someone at the NHTSC to read the EU report and determine if there was a problem with their study, even better when that study was being done why couldn’t they have made their concerns known then so that the EU regulators could incorporate them in their work, that would have been better both for US citizens and EU citizens. But government agencies aren’t about efficiency, they are about protecting themselves, then protecting domestic manufacturer’s and only last protecting citizens.
I’ve only done certification work once in my career, for a file server back in the 90s. The radio regulators around the world are all on the same page but the safety regulators aren’t. The only thing that required real work was FCC certification but that was by far the easiest and quickest thing to do. We just had to take our box to an FCC certified testing facility, a wooded building in the middle of a field, set up the antennae and measure the emissions and then fix the spots in the box that leaked. It was just physics and all of the regulators around the agreed so a couple of hours doing the tests and one report for everybody. Safety was a different story, almost no actual work as in the case of emissions, it was all just mountains of paperwork and fees to different agencies around the world. UL’s requirements in the US weren’t transferable to CE in the EU and neither was transferable to the regulators in Taiwan or Japan. All had different regulations, most having nothing to do with safety (the EU regulates the colors of LEDs for example). The regulators have no interest in harmonizing their regulations, quite the contrary. They want to keep competitors out of their market.
- This reply was modified 10 months ago by Joshua Rosen.