Without the production site in Trollhättan, I would not have noticed the Sion project. After a visit to Sono Motors and articles about the electric car, it leads to a crucial question. Would you drive a Sion? The answer shouldn't be made so easy. Because it is not.
The climate change. Heat records.
It's Wednesday, the 25. July 2019. The hottest day ever in Germany since the beginning of the weather records. My Saab is parked in the shade, but the temperature display says 39 degrees. In the shade, mind you! The automatic climate cools down the interior to a pleasant 22 degrees, all right? Is not it, quite the contrary! Climate change is hitting the country with full force, but not everyone has really noticed that.
42,6 degrees will be there this Wednesday in Lingen. A new German record. The TV stations switch special broadcasts, many intelligent people formulate sentences. Hardly anyone draws consequences. Otherwise, you could hardly explain the ever-increasing numbers of cruises and air travel, because even on this day the travelers wait at the Frankfurt airport in long lines. The country is sweating, politics are discussing CO2 levies, and in the north of Munich, a startup has a vehicle in the pipeline, which should actually be the car of the hour. No! Should!
How do I buy cars?
Analyzing my buying behavior is very easy. I just like brands that use technical features. Everything started with Citroen. The brand with the double angle. Visa Chrono GT, Citroën BX, CX GTI Turbo 2. The hydropneumatics, you know, some other operating concepts, clever lightweight construction. Several BX copies even made it to our company fleet. 500.000 kilometers were no problem, no matter what the trade press wrote about him. Robust, comfortable, frugal. And the field workers cried when VW replaced the BX Passat.
After Citroen came Saab. Turbocharged engines and in principle a kind Citroen for rational people. The last Saab I bought with conviction was one 9-5 BioPower chrome frame, The car was an aging diva, but the BioPower concept convinced me. CO2-neutral fuels from renewable raw materials, preferably from waste from the agricultural and wood industries, promised the future. By this time, humorous Americans had largely driven out the lateral thinking of the Swedes. In principle, the ethanol idea was just a byproduct of the Trionic project, conjured from some drawer in Trollhättan. Unfortunately, there was no future in Sweden or Germany.
A government headed by a climate chancellor proclaiming the energy turnaround tipped the E85 funding in favor of the Diesel lobby. It is obvious where that led. The chance of a quick and cheap CO02 reduction in road traffic was wasted. Our French neighbors are more pragmatic. E85 is available, and everyone can make their contribution to CO02 neutrality with little effort.
The Sion is the car of the hour?
The Sion could set a trend, the concept provides all the bases for it. High utility value, a battery that is reasonably sized and maintains the balance between suitability for everyday use and vehicle weight. A car that is not only suitable for the urban environment, but also for daily commuting. The highlight, however, are its solar panels integrated into the body. They generate up to 34 kilometers of green driving every day - when they get sun. If that's not enough for you, you can charge your Sion directly to your own solar system without any detours.
34 kilometers per day can be free. This is an announcement.
Too little? You might tend to accept the 34 kilometers as a nice marketing gimmick. Unfortunately, our society is jaded and flooded with stimuli. Some messages go unheard. Hence a small, deliberately conservative calculation: Let's assume that the Sion generates 10 free kilometers per day over the year. That is not very optimistic, but it adds up to an impressive 12 kilometers over 3.650 months. Also makes one aware that the average Annual mileage 2018 per car was at 13.922 kilometers, with a falling tendency, then everyone would be 4. Kilometers in the SEV of Sono Motors a CO2 neutral free ticket. In percentages: 26,21% of the mileage is given as a gift. And a good conscience with it.
26,21%! Suppose everyone at Shell or Esso would be 4. Liters for free, which will most likely never happen, what would that mean for the monthly costing of a family? Or Audi and BMW would give 3.650 kilometers of free travel year after year. The headlines would be fat, the demand unbelievable. The Sion is actually the car of the hour, it comes at the appropriate time. The future summers and winters will be cooler in our dreams at most, the current heat record will not last long.
Ready for the system change?
The climate and our mobility need something like a system change. And he has to come fast. If it has to be new cars and consumption, then please have a sustainable and likeable idea like a SEV with its own power generation.
So far 10.000 Menschen Reserved and paid a Sion. Only 10.000 or already 10.000? It depends on the perspective. VW has more reservations for the ID, Porsche for its first electric sports car. Both vehicles are considerably more expensive than a Sion. Not similarly sustainable, and arrested with big, heavy batteries in old, conventional thinking.
So only 10.000?
Probably yes, which is a pity. If you work more intensively with the project, then you realize that the base is still quite manageable. Maybe because it comes with too many unknowns. Or, because the media-wide effect has not yet developed the punch that she deserves. Maybe because the project, which I would never have noticed without its production site Trollhättan, is only a sympathetic utopia for a certain group of people in Germany.
How do the readers see this? Would you be prepared to rethink and change the system? Or is this all too much to ask?