Ecocruise based in Washington is set to enter the NEV market in January 2015 when they start shipping their Ecocruise Cruser Sport. The decidedly sporty model features a carbon fibre body over exposed tubular steel, exposed suspension and 14in aluminum wheels along with a covered rear hatch and T-tops. While built for the road, the design evokes off-road vehicles and reflects the off-road motorsports experience of company founder Steve Leighty who spent many years designing and building dirt bikes and ATVs.
The Cruser Sport features a Lifepo4 72v 62AH battery, 5kW brushless DC motor, 4-wheel disc brakes, dual A-arm front suspension and swing arm rear suspension. Other amenities include AM/FM radio, bucket seats and LCD instrument display. The Cruser Sport will retail for $8,500 to $11,900 depending on the battery and motor options.
Management expects their model lineup to be expanded shortly after the Cruser Sport launch with a one-seater EZIP-4 for around $3,800. In addition a line of service and utility vehicles, including electric scooters, will follow as well as a golf version of the Cruser Sport. Learn more: BBC.com
Comment: The Cruser Sport definitely has a different look than most of the NEVs on the market. While the consumer NEV market has grown, it has not been an explosive growth rate and in many areas has been eclipsed by commercial demand from institutions such as schools and parks looking for green and safe transportation alternatives. The consumer NEV market has been undercut, in part, by local regulations allowing expanded use of lower cost golf cars on public roads. In areas requiring compliance with NEV-type safety regulations NEVs have had more success. The design of the Cruser Sport may help it garner more sales than the typical NEV.