EVs Available Commercially

Last updated 2002.12.02
[March 2024 update] One thing that has changed over the past 2 decades is that it's easy now to buy an EV. Sometimes change can be good. For current information on buying EVs today, do a web search, subscribe to relevant publications, talk to friends and family who may already have one or two EVs or plug-in hybrids, or find a local EV group and attend a meeting or two, or go to an EV-related EVent. I'm leaving this page up for historical reference purposes - identifying the dead links to satisfy the whiny web-crawlers. And now back to the world of 2002.

There are quite a few options available if really want an EV. If you live in Europe, you may be able to purchase an EV from Renault, Peugeot, Fiat or another of the established manufacturers currently producing on-road EV's. If you live in California or Arizona, GM or Honda may permit you to lease an EV, if you meet their selection criteria. Ford is accepting advance orders for their electric pick-up truck by approved fleet operators only. However, there are smaller companies that produce electric cars or convert vehicles to electric power. (This list is undoubtedly incomplete, it shows only those sources of which I am aware. Inclusion in this list is not an endorsement of the vehicles, and no responsibility is taken for the accuracy or timeliness of information provided by others.)

If you are looking for more information and possible sources, be sure to check out the CALSTART - Advanced Transportation Vehicle Catalog (commercial vehicles only since 2020) and the ElectricCars.com review of available electric vehicles.

If a previously-enjoyed electric vehicle might suit your needs (and pocketbook), check out [dead link: evdl.htm#Sale] various EVs for Sale sites on the Web.

Automobiles, Light Trucks and Vans

AC Propulsion has built some pretty interesting prototypes with AC drive trains, and now is preparing to produce an electric sports car. Production is now scheduled for sometime in the year 2000.

B.A.T. International have produced a number of different conversions, and have a prototype electric van that has travelled 478 miles on a single charge using Zinc Air batteries.

[dead link] http://www.nev.bombardier.com/">Bombardier's Neighbourhood Electric Vehicle (NEV) is available in California, Arizona, Florida and Georgia. This vehicle travels up to 25 mph and about 30 miles on a charge using six lead-acid batteries. It charges from conventional 110-volt outlets via an on-board charger. Base price is approximately US$6,700.

Daihatsu produces a number of electric and hybrid utility vehicles under the HiJet line.

[dead link: http://www.dynastymotorcar.com/] Dynasty Motor Car produces the IT NEV (or LSV if you speak Canadian) in British Columbia.

Elcat of Finland, produces a small electric van, the Cityvan 200. Designed for use in cold-weather climates as well as more moderate areas, Elcat claims to have over 100 of the earlier version of their van in regular daily use in Finland.

Electric Vehicles of America, Inc. (EVA), Tel# 508-897-9393, Fax# 508-897-6740, 48 Acton Street, Maynard, MA 01754 USA

EVsNW used to convert Geo Metros / Suzuki Swift / Chevy Sprints to electric power under the name ElectriCity. They now specialize in electic bicycles.

[dead link: http://www.ford.com/electricvehicle/] Ford Motor Company maintains a Web page describing their Ecostar and electric Ranger pickup (actually done by TDM). The Ford Ranger can be ordered now in parts of the U.S. for delivery in 1998. Fleet purchases are being encouraged.

GM has produced the EV1 in the low hundreds of vehicles, and it is now available for lease at selected Saturn dealerships in a few areas in California and Arizona. Production of a small number of electric S-10 pickups was announced by GM in early 1997, but none are yet available.

[dead link: http://www.honda.com/cars/e-v/index.html] Honda's EV Plus, which is to be available for lease in May 1997 in California, is described on their Web site. Availability in New York state was announced in May 1998. The [dead link: http://www.honda1999.com/hybrid/homepage.html] Honda Prius is currently available in Japan, with teaser announcements of availability in North America in 2000 or later. Frankly, I don't understand the attraction of a hybrid that uses a 1.5 litre gasoline engine - seems like overkill to me when I have driven gasoline-powered 5-seaters in the past with engines of less than 1.1 litres displacement.

Peugeot describes their electric Model 106 on their web site.

[dead link: http://www.thinkmobility.com/norway.asp] Pivco produces the Th!nk line of electric vehicles, including the Th!nk Mobility. This firm was purchased by Ford in late 1999, and renamed the Mobility to the Th!nk City. The Th!nk Neighbour (a low-speed, neighbourhood electric car) and electric bicycles have been added to the line-up recently. No word from Ford yet on how to actually acquire any of the Th!nk vehicles.

Solectria converts conventional automobiles to electric propulsion, and does sell through at least one GM dealership in Massachusetts. They have several options for cold-weather operation. A Solectria vehicle using nickel-metal-hydride batteries (NiMH) has travelled over 400 miles on a single charge, and over 100 miles on a charge using lead-acid batteries.

The Canadian distributor for Solectria is SIRDO Canada Inc.

[dead link: http://www.toyota.com/html/shop/vehicles/ravev/rav4ev_0_home/index.html] The Toyota Electric RAV-4 has progressed from a development prototype, to a production vehicle available in limited quantities (less than 200 released in North America). However, Toyota has changed it's focus from zero-emissions vehicles to electric-assist gasoline cars like the Prius.

The Gizmo is a three-wheeler EV, featuring a tilt-canopy top, top speed of 30 mph, with a range of 20 to 30 miles of in-city driving. It is powered by a 3.5 horsepower motor, and stores energy in four lead-acid batteries. Price is reported to be less than US$6,000. For more information, check out the Gizmo Web Page.

The Sparrow is a single-seater, three-wheeler commuter EV. For more info, check out [dead link: http://www.corbin.com/corbinmotors/] Sparrow.

Transportation Initiatives of Virginia has designed yet another 3-wheeler called the [dead link: http://www.slalom3.com/] Slalom.

Another electric 3-wheeler is the [dead link: http://www.city-el.de/] City-El (site is in German).

The Zebra Model Z (formerly the Renaissance Tropica) is a two-seater electric sports car. For more info, check out [dead link: http://zebramotors.com/] Zebra Motors Inc.

In the Ottawa area, contact REV Consultants at (613) 722-9939 on the availability of various conversions to electric power.

In British Columbia, check out Canadian EVs regarding the availability of various conversions to electric power.

Interested in the idea of having pollution-free, low-maintenance electric transportation, but not quite ready to take the full plunge into a street-legal daily commuter? Perhaps you would consider a smaller step into the world of environmentally-friendly vehicles, such as:
Electric Motorcycles, Mopeds, Scooters and Bicycles or
Electric Boats or
Electric Tractors, Lawn Mowers and Implements.

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