The world is always in a state of change, but as car enthusiasts we often roll our eyes at the “green” cars that come out. Sure we understand that oil won’t last forever, that emitting CO2 is a bad thing for everyone, but gee whiz, we sure enjoy our spirited driving.
GM had the EV1 that looked so promising and then became an anecdote. No one was allowed to purchase the car so when GM decided to call it quits they gathered them up and crushed most of them. I just hope they didn’t delete all the engineering knowledge that had been gained.
There was the Honda Insight, and now the Toyota Prius is the darling of the tree huggers. Every car company that can is finding a way to slap the hybrid label on some of their vehicles. It is better than no one trying I suppose.
But there is someone REALLY trying. Commuter Cars Corporation of Washington state has ten prototypes of their Tango distributed world wide.
It is reminiscent of the Messerschmitt post WWII two-passenger car in terms of layout. It is a narrow 39 inches wide and 8′ 5″ long to allow it to park perpendicular to the curb. It is all electric, but don’t feel that owners will have to sacrifice performance for going green. The T600 will have 0-60 times of 4 seconds. Sure it is narrow, but its center of gravity is not as high as it looks. The majority of its weight is kept at the wheel line so stability is on par with most low slung sports cars.
Current battery technology keeps its range at about 80 miles, but a ten minute quick charge will provide 80% of a full change and therefore add another 50 miles of cruising.
As well as being stable it has a roll cage constructed that meets SCCA and NHRA regulations.
It has rack and pinion with Cadillac CTS collapsing steering column and Momo steering wheel. The Sparco seats have four point seat belts. The suspension is trailing arm rear and unequal length A-arms and coil-over Bilstein shocks on all four corners. It uses Acura Integra front brakes and Scorpio rear brakes with integrated parking brakes. Wilwood makes the master cylinder.
The T600 will have drive motors at all four wheels with 1000 lb./ft. of torque. Hold on because this has a top speed of 150 mph.
The car is designed to have a practical life of 50 years through extensive use of stainless steel and recyclable materials. The car is designed so that as components are updated on newer models the older versions can be swapped out of the existing cars easily.
Six Tangos have been sent to San Francisco, two to Washington, one to Idaho, and one to London.