MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 11:48 am
I am very disappointed about the yoke and the side view camera center screen decisions. The Alpha steering wheel and 2 dedicated screens for the side view cameras were perfect.
Before this I was prepared to buy an Aptera without having a test ride, but now I am not. These 2 items will probably deter me from buying an Aptera at all. For me, these are safety issues, not something I can just dismiss.
Maybe in 3-4 years they will decide to offer a regular steering wheel and 2 dedicated screens for the side view cameras (like the Alpha has), until then I’m out.
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 12:10 pm
Perhaps best for you to move on then and find something more suitable for your taste. in MHO it is getting a little annoying hearing your constant “Opinion” on the features of the Aptera you don’t like. You have made your point many times. Now how about giving it a rest. Or find some of the many features of this remarkable vehicle to praise.
No offense intended. Just expressing my opinion
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 12:19 pm
I agree. I feel like there’s two camps in these discussions. Those who are in love the engineering efficiencies of this vehicle. And those who were interested at one time, and are now just looking for a way out.
I’m going to own one of these cars as soon as mine is minted. Maybe Aptera should have an official poll to satisfy the desire for some individuals to voice their opinions. And feel acknowledged. So maybe they can move on. Or we enable some new discussion rules that limits this type of spam to threads dedicated to the topic.
Thank you Aptera for this update. Please ignore the noise and keep moving forward.
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 12:24 pm
I like much better the screen in front of the driver compared to what was done before. I guess that Aptera will also add some information like speed, direction… on the divider line of the 2 cameras. That would be great.
The interior itself looks great. I hope that they will use fabric and not leather for the seats. We will see 🙂
But there is one thing that I don’t like, and it is for safety reason, it is the yoke. How are we suppose to drive using this yoke? There is nowhere we can grab it. The “flat” steering wheel looked better and at least you could grab it.
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 1:08 pm
Go find a Tesla Model S owner and ask the owner to let you drive it (With a yoke) I drove my uncles for a day to get the experience. No problem. I actually find it easier than a round wheel. Conservation of motion for turns!
I am sure you will have a chance to test drive an Aptera, either an early delivery to an Ambassador or an Aptera sponsored event. The Beta configuration of one monitor and a yoke may save a little weight and some cost. Both two good things too.
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 3:49 pm
It is not like a Model S yoke as you can’t grab it on the side.
Most standard round steering wheels are bad also, but at least you can grab it from 10-2 if not from 9-3. The new Aptera yoke, you can only grab it from 7-5. I hope that I am wrong on this.
Anyway, I am from France, so we don’t see a lot of new Model S, mostly EVs like Model 3, Renault Zoe, Hyundai Kona and other EV brands. It will be difficult to try a Tesla yoke. It will be even harder to test drive an Aptera.
The problem with the Aptera yoke is the the evasive maneuver, it will be very difficult to do it.
I agree that one monitor in from is better than 2 monitors on the side.
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 2:08 pm
Jonah, no offence taken. My several posts about the yoke and the camera screens were only to give an honest feedback and try to “steer” the management of Aptera to keep their design as the original Alpha vehicle, which was great. A normal steering wheel and 2 dedicated screens for the cameras would work fantastic. Since a decision from Aptera was made to proceed with something else, I won’t be making any more posts/comments about these 2 items.
I have a new car and I love it, I don’t need or have to move to anything else as you and John Malcolm have suggested. I was willing to trade my car for Aptera because of the solar charging, efficiency and the cost of the car, and I was willing to lose money on that. There is absolutely nothing else about Aptera that would make it better (for me) than my current car. I am not willing to compromise my safety in any way, and the yoke and the single center screen for the side view cameras are big safety issues for me.
I am expressing my personal opinion, which is the purpose of the forum. I am not telling anyone not to buy the Aptera. Since I am an investor (little bit over $10,000) at this moment I am more concerned about my investment than getting an Aptera. I wish more people would buy Aptera because of the environment, but also because I want to see my investment grow over the years.
As I have mentioned before, I have no problems waiting several years for Aptera to change their design. I might even buy the larger Aptera when it comes out a few years from today, and I am not in a hurry at all. If you or anyone else wants to buy the Aptera with the current design, I will be more than happy about that.
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 2:10 pm
ModeratorMarch 25, 2022 at 12:45 pm
I must say I am not a fan of the yoke vs. a flat-bottom and flat-top steering wheel like we’ve seen in the Alpha models. I’d like to hear a more extensive explanation from Jason or Chris for why Aptera went for the yoke. The main advantage I see is how the yoke gives one an unobstructed view of the front display screen. The explanation in the video was brief and didn’t get into the nuances of the decision-making.
I’ll reserve judgement until I hear from early owners and have an opportunity to actually experience the Aptera yoke for myself on a test drive.
Interesting that the Beta model in the video did not have a yoke as best as I can tell from this screenshot:
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 2:37 pm
1A-1, Please don’t take any personal offense here, but, anyone who would buy a car without sitting in it and taking at least a quick test drive is out of their ever lovin’ mind. (And this is from a Paradigm reservation holder.)
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 2:56 pm
I have…twice. Loved both cars. The salesperson was quite exasperated on the last one when I refused to drive it.
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 2:58 pm
Hi Oz, good one, although I am out of my mind 🙂 I just bought a $2,000 pizza oven without testing it and it came out perfect, awesome Neapolitan pizzas.
I was considering flying to San Diego for a test drive, if one wasn’t available near New Jersey. Nice weekend in California, an Aptera test drive etc.
I don’t know if this still applies, but I believe Aptera mentioned that you could buy one and return it in 30 days or less if you don’t like it, so I might just do that.
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 4:42 pm
1A-1, it was the first 1,000 miles at the time it was mentioned, I don’t recall a time constraint, but I am getting oldish. NJ Neapolitan pizza? If I make a cross country trip when I get mine, if you’re still in line I’ll drop by for a test drive, for a slice.
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 9:33 pm
The return warranty currently states “7 days, 1000 miles”…
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 5:35 am
👍 Thanks Kerbe
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 12:56 pm
I am not a fan of the yoke. This should be kept to a traditional round steering wheel.
I almost like the idea of having the screens for the rear view cameras directly in front of you. It will take some getting used to, but they should spread them out a little and put a speedometer readout in the center. There is no reason why you should have to look away from the road to see how fast you’re going.
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 2:10 pm
No vehicle will meet all of my needs. The Aptera will meet many of them. Undoubtedly there will be changes and additions I will need to make right for me. Even if I have to build a new steering yoke.
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 3:00 pm
At :35 He says, First production run of solar panels.
Question: Has there ever been a fully functional solar panel on this car yet? If you look at some shots you see a smooth hood (at the top of the community page) while others show the outline of the solar panels and are not so smooth. Which will it be?
I sincerely hope there has been a fully functional solar set up in which they used to determine at least some of their initial claims.
As for the yoke and center screens I’ll adapt to the yoke and I like the center split screen. It keeps my eyes focusing ahead.
Here in Georgia in order to make a proper lane change one is expected to Turn on your signal, Look to the direction for any blind spotted cars and then proceed. Hopefully the law will change in that regard as we evolve.
I still want my old MTV and my Aptera.
- This reply was modified 3 months, 1 week ago by Steven G. Bueche.
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 9:38 pm
No – the three Alphas were just proof-of-concept “design studies”: They were not outfitted with fully working systems, like AC, for example. The design and manufacture of the solar panels has been entirely experimental up to this point: It will be interesting to see what they think will be the best option when the “solar” Beta is built. I would assume that the solar panels will have a smooth surface over the cells and not a “poured-on” coating.
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 3:18 pm
I vaguely remember Mr. Anthony claiming on having a fully functional solar “mock up” of some sort sitting on his roof for a year or so and that’s were we get the 700 watt peak power claim. I remain skeptical of the 700 watt number without the adding of a whole lot of extra cells somehow. I’m guessing the 700 watt number came from simply multiplying the easily measured open circuit voltage (Voc) and the easily measured short circuit current (Isc) and the “guesstimated” “fill factor(1)”. It’s a good way to estimate peak power for a flat array but will always overestimate it for a compound curved one.
On at least hood and roof, I can’t imagine Aptera solar team isn’t trying to “embed” solar cells within upper skin of composite. More than a handful of solar race cars have been built that way. The problem, however, is how do you keep it reasonably low in weight while providing sufficient impact protection. Also, impact protection comes at the expense of optical loss.
(1) Fill factor is calculated as Pmax/(Voc x Isc). It’s a kind of “figure of merit” to indicate the “squareness” of the knee of the current vs voltage curve (IV) curve. The squarer the better.
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 5:53 pm
I’m happy and excited with the design going further with a non-standard steering wheel. This vehicle is non-standard in so many ways, and I like the way that is following into the interior. This latest design of the yoke does look a little odd to me and I’m not sure how I can ‘grab’ it, but I’m sure that will all be worked out. At my age, the more the yoke looks like KITT’s from Knight Rider the better. =D
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 7:41 pm
Everything is heating up so much, mu post will probably not even be notice, but hear goes.
At time 1:33 a computer rendering is shown of the interior. I disliked the previous white on the doors, dash, and yoke. These have been replaced by what appears to be cloth, even the yoke. I hope the yoke is covered in cloth is a slip of the computer button.
I very much hope the left button on the yoke is not for turn signals. I want the turn signal control to always be in the same place and not move around the column when the yoke is turned. I do not see a turn signal stalk protruding from the behind the yoke on the left side. In previous pictures there was a turn signal stalk present.
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 9:07 pm
To Jonah or John or whoever is or is not claiming to have or have not written 🙂 their original (no longer on the forum) post that I was just responding to, here it is again for your reference (from the email notification for the post):
“Jonah Jorgenson replied to the discussion Monthly Aptera Update for March in the forum Aptera Discussions:
Thanks for posting this! Wasn’t sure they would get an update in before the end of the month. I am in a Masters Program in aero engineering. We just finished a sequence of classes and labs on Human Factors Design, a VERY important skill for designing space systems used by humans. The deletion of the side screens for the cameras and consolidation of those views on one screen in front of the driver fits best practice principles we have learned in both class and validated in labs. Glad to see some real world implementation of best practices in Aptera. Way ahead of most of the other EV Pretenders. We have no active research on the use of Yokes for steering vehicles. However, I have researched the topic in proprietary databases and publically available data and can find no empirical data that would indicate that a yoke device is any less safe than a round wheel, rectangular wheel, levers, or any other steering device. Even anecdotal data is in short supply. This dearth of empirical data a year after Tesla implemented a yoke in the Model S Plaid, is a strong indication that the safety sky is not falling with a yoke in the Aptera.” As beauty is in the eye of the beholder” so “Safety is in the mind of the driver” I venture to say that most complaining about the yoke have not driven using a yoke. Even so, If an experienced wheel driver should have no problem driving safely with a yoke if they exercise an modicum of e safety attention. So with this report, two down and two to go with the big four I track with a Pareto Chart of issues. the two remaining are will Aptera raises prices, and what will the exterior finish be. Hope to see Aptera responses to two issues in next months update.”
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 10:51 pm
Today’s video updates from both Aptera and Transport Evolved were enjoyable and informative and I can’t wait for more! Aptera’s openness, clarity and transparency in keeping its fans, investors, and everyone informed is probably the gold standard of the car world. However, reading the comments both here in the forum and on YouTube I can’t help but notice that the issue of The Yoke is generating a lot of rather heated discussion.
Not to stir the pot (he says, hiding the wooden spoon behind his back) but I’ve got a problem with it. Not with the yoke itself. I don’t like it at all, but that’s just my personal opinion based on a rendering. I’ll wait till I try it out to decide where it’s a deal-killer or if I’m just overreacting (which I very well may be). Rather, I’m concerned about the explanation for it from Aptera which, in a number of replies to comments, reads; <font face=”Liberation Serif, serif”><font size=”3″> </font></font>
<font color=”#030303″>“<font face=”Liberation Serif, serif”><font size=”3″>Our efforts resulted in a gateway decision which upholds & expands the Aptera ethos of efficiency and user </font></font></font><font color=”#030303″><font face=”Liberation Serif, serif”><font size=”3″>experience!”</font></font></font>
<font face=”Liberation Serif, serif”><font size=”3″>Holy double-speak, Batman! Seriously, what on earth does that even mean? They replaced the primary interface between car and driver with that… whateveritis… because it “expands their ethos”? That’s a string of corporate buzzwords, not an explanation.</font></font>
<font face=”Liberation Serif, serif”><font size=”3″>A whole lot of the Aptera is new and breaks a whole lot of rules, and Chris, Steve, & Sarah, et al has been wonderfully enthusiastic in explaining the how and why of their radical design. It’s a big part of why Aptera has so many eager investors and reservation holders (like me!). But if they’re going to re-create something as basic as the steering wheel, there had better be a better explanation of why than that nonsensical line of marketing seminar gobbledygook. This was very un-Aptera-ish (yes, new word). Folks have good reasons for being skeptical of The Yoke. It means a potentially significant change to the driving experience, so it’s kind of a big deal. Plus, it’s ugly (<font size=”2″>sorry, couldn’t resist</font>) Still, I’m presuming that this was a one-off “oops” and eagerly more serious info regarding The Yoke and continue to look forward to future updates! End of stir.</font></font>
<font face=”Liberation Serif, serif”><font size=”3″>Oh, and to that one troll here on the forum who posted that folks who express skepticism of The Yoke must be “clinging to what is known”, please consider that everyone who posts here has likely either invested in Aptera, has one reserved, or both. So, afraid to try new things? Might want to rethink that one, dude. </font></font>
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 7:56 am
I wonder why your post is full of HTML tags…
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 9:29 am
Not sure what I did wrong there but yeah, it’s kinda embarrassing.
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 11:42 am
This to me also, is why none of Aptera’s replies about the yoke have reduced my skepticism.
Don’t tell me it “upholds and expands the Aptera ethos of efficiency…” Just tell me HOW a yoke makes Aptera more efficient, and I may be able to get behind it.
When we were living in Zimbabwe, the top half of our car’s steering wheel was cut off in a theft attempt. For the several months it took to source a new steering wheel it never ceased to be an annoying distraction. And of course we never had to abruptly countersteer as one sometimes must when driving on snow or ice.
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 11:01 pm
Please for all that is sacred in the world of engineering and keeping your words of efficiency, be like Mazda and their “gram strategy.”
You can remove things and still make a great vehicle. Still make it safe. Still make it more than what you need for most of the time and yet still meet your other design goals. And for the few times you need something else, there’s a friend or a rental lot down the road.
Keep the yoke (minimize some of the material though but keep it.) It’s safe. Even with me autocrossing/tracking my 2017 Miata all I need to go 30-50-80+ mph around sharp corners or slaloms are my hands at 9 & 3. No more. Now there are vehicles that have horrible steering ratios where it takes 4 turns of the wheel to do anything, but those are not sporty but people adapt and do the steering-shuffle (many changes of grip). If I get my hands moving any more than just trying to catch oversteer, I know I’m sliding around too much (that can be fun too, but not fast and definitely not safer). If I need to make a U-turn on the street (3 right turns round the block also does the trick), I’m going slow enough that I go from 9 & 3 to crossed arms and easily finish with one hand repositioned to either the bottom of the wheel or just have one hand swivel the wheel. I do >90% of my daily driving in a manual with hands defaulting to 9 & 3. It’s my most comfortable position. My fingers aren’t wrapping around anything (cell phone, cigarette, etc.), they just make a C and are resting on the backside of the center cross bar, and my thumb is resting on top of the center bar that meets the circle of the wheel at the 9 & 3 position (surprising they put it there right? and the wiper and signal stalks are there too). I seem to not use 80% of the wheel. So if the airbag is deployed, my hands are not wrapped or hung on anything, they will just slip right off.
Glad to hear the intention of making the “regulatory mirrors” easily removable.
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 1:01 am
@Jeffrey Parker : I agree with you, you should grab it at 9 & 3. The problem is that it will be difficult to grab the Aptera yoke at 9& 3 as there is a huge yoke branches there coming from the center of the yoke.
The branch attaching the center to the yoke shouldn’t be that thick and should be at 10 & 2 or 7 & 4
Well most steering wheels are very bad and have the branches at 9 & 3. But at least you can mitigate this by grabbing it at 10 & 2.
- This reply was modified 3 months, 1 week ago by GRAUSS Thierry.
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 2:46 am
Has anyone considered Drive Fatigue when talking about the yoke? If you’re the type that likes driving long distances do you not shift your hands to various positions around the wheel for comfort, pressure relief or just letting that section of the wheel dry? This doesn’t apply to me as I’d rather fly for extended distance trips in my older age. But those who are opting for the 400/600/1000 mile possibilities (non have been proven yet) this might be an issue.
The wife drives with her hand at the 6 O’clock position which drives me crazy. I was taught in school the 10-2 now days they teach the 9-3. Either way after a few hours you’re going to want to shift positions on that wheel.
Cloth on the steering wheel? Cool in renders but not the real world. That thing will always be dirty with sweat and grime in general. Keep the seats cloth. My 25 year old Jeep still has the same cloth without a tear anywhere (except the Pleather side) I can’t see me wanting to spray, scrub and vacuum the steering wheel and then putting my hands on the remaining cleaning agent to drive.
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 8:04 am
With most modern ADAS systems it’s not necessary to maintain a grip on the steering wheel – just to rest some weight or maintain other physical contact with it.
My “position of choice” is to keep my right leg cocked so that my knee is close to the wheel then, resting my hand on my knee (and my elbow on the armrest), keep my thumb and forefinger on the wheel while driving with ACC and LKA active.
For long-distance driving this, alone, reduces stress in my neck, shoulders and upper back – making for a more comfortable and relaxing driving experience.
MemberMarch 30, 2022 at 8:10 am
Yes – My hands are always on the lower 1/2 of the wheel most of the time – especially on long trips. Usually on long trips I have one hand at about 7:30 on the wheel. Bottom left side. I don’t really touch the top except in parking lots.
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 6:11 am
Great video! Nice to see things are coming along, much slower than I’d like but still moving forward. I have no opinion on the wheel vs yoke decision but…. It’s kinda funny to me that in the same video where they discuss the benefits of the yoke they show the driver cruising out on the open road with his hand positioned at the top of the beta’s steering wheel.
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 8:06 am
The Beta’s steering wheel appears to be a bolt-on unit connected to a rigid post: No airbag to worry about…
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 6:56 am
The yoke would be better with thumb holes to support the 9-3 position.
If that’s not possible, I wonder if one could hack in nubs or extensions on the side or back of the yoke to improve the usability of the 9-3 position.
I’m not a fan of the cloth on the yoke, either.
Luckily there are not many buttons, so that improves the odds that alternatives can be swapped in.
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 6:41 pm
It does look like it will be a little difficult to get a wrap around grip on that wheel, and impossible at the 9 & 3 positions. It looks thick but might have detents on the back side. I know earlier they have stated they were researching seat belt air bags. I wonder if they gave that up and put it in the center of the yoke. If not then I don’t see why they couldn’t add an air spoke to each side. Just need to plug a fat thumb in somewhere and hang the hand from it.
MemberMarch 27, 2022 at 11:35 am
ModeratorMarch 27, 2022 at 11:42 am
LOL. Brilliant, Paul. Only downside I can think of is that it might end up in my forehead in the event of a front end collision! JK
MemberMarch 27, 2022 at 12:26 pm
Ha! I have used one of those. Being left handed I would mount in on the lower left side. It is a lazy way to turn the yoke I think, no challenge. Also outlawed in some states as a safety hazard.
MemberMarch 28, 2022 at 12:24 pm
I am curious if Sandy Munro had any influence on the change to a yoke steering wheel. After his trip around the country in the new Tesla Plaid, he fell in love with the yoke steering wheel. I love the idea of the new center screen that will allow me to see both sides of the vehicle at the same time instead of switching my head back and forth to two different screens or mirrors. After watching a few videos on people having the yoke or changing to it, I am willing to give it a try.
MemberMarch 28, 2022 at 5:56 pm
Replacing that yoke with another or a regular wheel will cost me about $500. I’m hoping all this feedback to Aptera will convince them to redesign the yoke or offer another option. I don’t want to spend more money to fix a brand new car.
MemberMarch 28, 2022 at 7:12 pm
Maybe if enough of us get together we can make a bulk purchase from a manufacturer for a better price…I’m in
MemberMarch 28, 2022 at 8:01 pm
Jason Hill seemed convinced that the yoke is the ideal solution before they’d validated it, and his faith in the yoke leaves me with the impression that he’ll find a way to justify it even if a yoke proves to be suboptimal during testing.
As far as I can tell, the yoke solves two problems (front-screen visibility & leg room) while creating a new problem (awkward steering wheel shape). No matter how good they make the front-screen and the leg room, it won’t solve the new problem with the awkward steering wheel shape.
For all of us on the forums who want an extremely long-range, energy-efficient vehicle, the Aptera is likely our only chance. I really want them to get it right. I wouldn’t mind the yoke if they could somehow solve the problem with the awkward steering wheel shape, but I’m concerned that their “solution” will either be to ignore the problem or to do something that creates new problems.
MemberMarch 28, 2022 at 9:19 pm
@Jacob Armstrong Remember that Nathan is a designer, not an engineer: What we’ve seen so far is that Aptera is an engineering-driven company. Nathan designed the Alpha, too, and look at the changes it’s undergone to become the Beta! As one of the recent videos stated, the interior design has been mocked-up so that it can undergo ergonomic testing – so whatever design we see in a rendering is just an idea or direction that the final – well-tested – interior will take.
MemberMarch 29, 2022 at 5:33 pm
I tend to believe Jason’s statement that they have done human factors testing (HF) and, based on what ever HF criteria they score against it did quite well. I believe there may be an engineering reason for choice of the yoke too. Perhaps, in conjunction with yoke software and the power steering and wheel motor control subsystems implementation, the yoke is the most efficient way to control steering.
A moot point. We need to wait until all testing is done, specs published, and most important, we can have an actual experience with an Aptera yoke.
I don’t see the engineering group that created the Aptera doing anything to create problems quite the opposite. I believe this extremely talented group has solved many preexisting EV issues.
My opinion only of course, but to me it seems you are creating a notional problem in your mind that we don’t know will exist in the real world yet.
MemberMarch 31, 2022 at 2:38 pm
I hope the aftermarket world will make available, aerodynamic “tails” that can be fitted to the mirror side of the mirrors to make them more aerodynamic, since many of us will not be using the mirrors.,
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 12:54 pm
Real nice to hear re: the yoke. So many strong opinions about a feature most haven’t had extensive hands on experience with. Clinging to what is known vs being open to something else.
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 1:30 pm
Jonah, I actually have a Human Factors Engineering degree from Tufts University, so always appreciate people who prioritize that. 🙂 Thanks for sharing. I generally agree with your observations on the positive potential for their proposed centralized display, which becomes a close approximation to achieving the benefits of a HUD. Nonetheless, it is unusual and therefore untested in the real world, plus it will require a learning curve both within vehicle (based on prior learned behaviors), when switching between different personal vehicles, and for occasional drivers (lending it to a friend).
I personally am concerned regarding the yoke, though I am open to trying it out in a test drive. It “looks cool” and works well for aircraft/F1 applications that require finer hand movements plus do not include full 360 degree spins of the yoke/wheel, and it of course enables unobstructed view of the new proposed centralized upper display. Nonetheless, other foundational principles of Human Factors include simplicity and designing for subconscious level understanding where possible. The yoke does not work well for those principles since it injects more interaction complexity to achieve the same functional role as a standard round wheel. The yoke has open air between 10:00 and 2:00, grab nubs at 10 and 2, semi-solid sides between 10/8 and 2/4, and then a semi-flattened open wheel rim between 8 and 4. That is much to keep track of in “muscle memory” and adjust to very quickly when making a fast evasive maneuver. I would not jump to the conclusion that a lack of data means everything is OK on this; that lack of real world road vehicle data flows both ways on drawing conclusions. I believe that people can adapt, though the yoke will still be an incremental step backwards in terms of usability and safety.
And I agree with your list of remaining potential issues (price and exterior finish). I personally add the lack of good lateral field of view due to the current split window design in the doors, though they are not going to address that unfortunate issue so it has become a take it or leave it item. Exterior finish can still be improved without changing the fundamental benefits and design of the vehicle. Yoke/wheel can potentially be improved with little design-shift cost if they can still provide a view of their proposed central display across a range of seated eye heights or adjust that display approach.
UPDATE/CONTEXT: The original long post that I was replying to appears to have been deleted by that author, though my thread response here was retained in the forum.
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 1:26 pm
Thanks for supporting Aptera’s engineering team for their remarkable and innovative work
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 1:43 pm
Then I would suggest you do what engineering practice would dictate, do some research and experimentation rather than citing observations and conceptual judgement. How about finding some empirical data that would support your hypothesis.
You admit in your post that you haven’t tried it yet but are drawing and stating conclusions. In my engineering education and experience, the first principle was not to jump to a conclusion but form a hypothesis and test it with empirical data.
I had no problem driving with a yoke – practical experience
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 1:17 am
Most steering wheels are bad and make it difficult to grab them at 9 & 3 :/
I hope that Aptera will modify the yoke to be able to grab it at 9 & 3, which is not currently the case looking at the rendering. In fact I don’t know that we will be able to grab it on the side at all as from what I can see on the rendering, the only way to grab it is from the bottom.
I like most of the Aptera design, but, I am wondering also about the exterior finish/wrap, the yoke design (I would say worse than the Tesla yoke) and the split door window.
I hope that they will change the design of the doors with fixed windows (can’t open) for the European version as it won’t be available in the first version there anyway. It will save weight, complexity, cost and with the AC we don’t need to open them anyway. For the drive-in fast foods and the highway toll, the current design of the window won’t work anyway and you will have to open the door.
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 2:28 pm
Jonah, you said you support the yoke because it lacks data. Then you berate me for the same thing. From your earlier post that I was politely responding to in the spirit of discussion and providing my viewpoint for your consideration (and you have since deleted your original long post from the forum for whatever reason) you said “We have no active research on the use of Yokes for steering vehicles.” and other related comments. We are in “violent agreement” then, even if I disagree with the tone of your response and the conclusion that you draw (which you essentially admit is based on nothing except your personal opinion, just like I have an opinion). Unlike your inputs, I provided a clear design rationale to consider and I presented it to you based on my general professional experience. I also clearly said I was willing to give the yoke a try, though have some concerns about it at this early point for the specific reasons cited. It is not a deal breaker for me, and I never said as such.
This is a discussion forum, and you do not have to agree with my opinion. You said you have no relevant information and you therefore support the yoke. ‘Nuf said. I stand by my discussion inputs, and I wish you well.
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 5:52 pm
Scott, I did not delete anything.
To be clear, in that post I said I could not find any public or private data sources that implied the yoke device was a hazard to driving safety after a year of being in service with Tesla. What I did not say in that post was the NHTSA allowed Tesla to proceed with the yoke and since that time has no record of safety issues reported with the yoke.
Second I said I HAD direct personal experience driving with a yoke. You admitted no experience driving with the yoke and provided no data to support your contention that the yoke is dangerous.
I keep a record of my posts. I will find the one you referenced and repost it so the forum can view the content you are inaccurately referring to.
Of course in the forum all are entitled to post their opinions. Mine are as valid as yours and base on real world driving experience.
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 6:18 pm
I am not sure how the above got posted under my ID but not mine. whoever it belongs to should claim. I will write a note to Aptera reporting another defect in the forum SW
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 6:51 pm
So sorry my post. I had a long post deleted earlier (Violation of guidelines?) and this now shows up under another ID. It is my post. Don’t know how to correct, but apologies to John Malcom and to Scott Price
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 9:24 am
John/Jonah, to correct your interpretation (when you stated “You admitted no experience driving with the yoke”): I said “I personally am concerned regarding the yoke, though I am open to trying it out in a test drive.” “The yoke” referred to the Aptera yoke in a test drive of an Aptera vehicle, which none of us have tried out yet. I actually have used a yoke in both a vehicle and an airplane. I found it to be a useful control interface for the airplane.
MemberMarch 25, 2022 at 6:52 pm
changed password. should fix any future hack
ModeratorMarch 26, 2022 at 6:23 am
Given that we’ve had such an online debate (discussion?) re: yoke, I think a detailed commentary on their decision from Jason Hill, the designer, or from Chris is warranted. Hopefully, continuing the Aptera policy of transparency, one of them would be willing to put the cards on the table — comment on the reasoning behind the yoke decision. I for one would be very interested to get it “straight from the horses mouth.”
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 6:50 am
Regarding the yoke steering, there seems to be three camps.
(1) those that have never used a yoke and afraid of new things.
(2) those who have tried yoke steering and loved it or have seen the many YouTube videos from those who were once skeptics but now love their yokes after using them for more than 30 minutes.
(3) those who just want the most efficient form of transport on the planet, they want it YESTERDAY and don’t care if it steers like South Parks “IT” bike 😳😆.
I am in the second camp plus I need tilt & telescopic steering to find my comfort zone. 😋
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 8:12 am
I felt that the video pretty much explained their design decision – what more would you want them to say?
I like to drive with my arms extended and the wheel as low as possible. Because I have long legs and a relatively short torso, this position means that the top of the wheel almost invariably blocks my view of the display, no matter what vehicle I’m driving. In order to see through most wheels I need to raise the wheel to an uncomfortable height – so I’m delighted by the concept of a wheel that won’t block my view!
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 8:08 am
FYI – “Yoke” – “yolk” is the yellow part of an egg.
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 12:06 pm
I think that those of us who are skeptical of the yoke have valid reasons for our concern, none of which have anything to do with it being “new” (it’s not new). It is rude to dismiss us as being “afraid of new things”. Maybe we just have different experiences than you?
I’d be interested in knowing how many of those who love their yokes have had to perform an emergency countersteer on snow or ice with it.
If Aptera can document emergency manoeuvres on snow or ice being performed just as accurately and quickly with a yoke as with a wheel, I will accept it. It Aptera can convince me it offers some other practical advantage beyond “feels like the future” I may accept it even if it offers slightly poorer performance in slippery emergencies. So far my requests for Aptera to enumerate the advantages of a yoke have been met with design and marketing gobbledygook.
MemberMarch 28, 2022 at 5:45 pm
(4) Those that have never driven a yoke but are willing to try one and re-learn the necessary muscle memory to competently handle emergency situations. Then one look at a cartoon yoke makes me think “NOPE”.
When driving a vehicle that looks like (depending on color) a cross between a Batmobile and George Jetson’s car, one can simply not steer the vehicle with a plushie with rigor mortis.
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 9:13 am
Agree. The decision has been made lets move on. We are not Aptera’s Board. They owe us nothing more than provided in the video in way of explanation which is more than a Tesla or other EV company would provide. Aptera did more due diligence than most would have done to come up with the decision. Good engineers, good job, good decision.
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 10:44 am
OK, regarding Tim’s 3 camps on yoke steering wheel, I feel that I and perhaps GRAUSS and others fall into a 4th camp. I have never tried a yoke, but rather than afraid of new things, I’m in the agnostic camp. As noted, the most recent video seems to show an Aptera yoke that is only fully graspable from the 7-5 position. That’s precious little room to have your hands fully engaged and would seem to make both steering and comfortable driving problematic. The Tesla yoke, and perhaps others that forum members are familiar with, offers much more hand contact, all the way up to a 9-3 position, while still providing unobstructed view of any screens. I’m quite certain I could get used to, if not love, that type of yoke. I totally agree with Ray that given all the member angst over the Aptera yoke design, we definitely need a full detailed commentary from either Jason or Chris and perhaps a demonstration of someone actually driving with this yoke, which we have yet to see on any of the existing videos. Finally, I’ll add my 2 cents that cloth material (especially white!) for the yoke would be a bad choice, given how much handling it’s going to receive. One’s hands are not always going to be perfectly clean and even natural oils are going to result in discoloration and eventual breakdown. My vote would be for some type of vegan leather – much more durable and cleanable!
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 1:46 pm
Bob, you make a good point, which reminded me of my hydroplaning a long time ago. I drove through a patch of water that didn’t look deep at all. I was going around 50-60 mph. To my surprise the car loosed contact with the pavement and started rotating around its vertical axis to the left. I immediately started counter steering and my car started rotating to the right. I started counter steering again, my car rotated to the left and did a 360 degree rotation. At this point my speed was substantially decreased and I have managed to get my car into 2nd gear (stick shift) and continue driving straight.
This happened one day before my wedding with my future wife and couple of friends in the car 🙂
Long story short, if the car had a yoke I wouldn’t be writing on this forum. You can’t do emergency maneuvers like this when 1/2 of the steering wheel is missing. I will be buying the Aptera when they decide to offer a regular steering wheel.
MemberMarch 27, 2022 at 12:41 pm
I don’t think that is Aptera’s job. Aptera indicated that they have done their engineering due diligence and based on their evaluation of that analysis, have made a “Gateway decision” to proceed with the yoke. It is now up to the customer set to determine how they want to proceed with that Aptera decision.
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 2:19 pm
Front wheel drive car, I presume?
Gotta love that trailing-throttle oversteer!
It happened to me too, once, while pulling away from the US border in a winter thunderstorm on a strangely banked uphill right hand curve in a 1980 Honda Civic. Ended up sliding off the road backwards.
Fortunately I think Aptera’s precise torque adjustments every two and a half inches would intervene before a similar situation would get so far out of hand. Ice and snow, however, are another matter. There’s only so much that automation can compensate for very limited traction.
MemberMarch 26, 2022 at 3:26 pm
Didn’t take long for you to renege on your statement on the 25th in this thread. 🤨
“Jonah, no offence taken. My several posts about the yoke and the camera screens were only to give an honest feedback and try to “steer” the management of Aptera to keep their design as the original Alpha vehicle, which was great. A normal steering wheel and 2 dedicated screens for the cameras would work fantastic. Since a decision from Aptera was made to proceed with something else, I won’t be making any more posts/comments about these 2 items”