Jan 23, 2009 (11:01 PM EST)
Image Gallery: Highway-Speed Electric Vehicles

Read the Original Article at InformationWeek

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With the heads of Detroit's Big Three automakers groveling before Congress, hats in hand, electric and hybrid carmakers are racing to market vehicles that promise to replace our gas-sucking buggies.




The Miles all-electric midsize sedan reaches a top speed that exceeds 80 mph.
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The odds against these upstart automakers are formidable, but interest in low-emission vehicles has never been greater. We look beyond golf carts at highway-speed electrics and hybrids that show plenty of moxie, if not quite production-readiness.

Miles Electric Vehicles

Miles is a Santa Monica-based maker of a highway-speed all electric midsize sedan which is slated to be available in Q1 2001. The sedan can top 80 mph and has a 100+ mile driving range. Its proprietary lithium-ion battery pack is guaranteed for 8 years or 100K miles. Projected MSRP is $40,000 - $45,000 and drivers may be eligible for a $5,000 - $7,500 tax credit under legislation recently passed by Congress.




The 3-wheel Aptera can achieve top speeds in excess of 85 mph, going from 0-60 in under 10 seconds.
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Aptera Motors

If the Miles sedan is Ed from accounting, the aerodynamic Aptera Typ-1e is Chuck from the Bonneville Salt Flats. The aerodynamic Aptera Typ-1e could not look more different than the battery-drawn coach from Miles. Its sleek design owes more to the aviation industry than to Detroit's standard-issue boxes on wheels.

With 300-mpg and zero emissions, the Aptera Typ-1e was hailed by Popular Mechanics with a Breakthrough Award in October 2008 and is a contender for the Automotive X Prize.

The company estimates its all electric version will cost $27,000 and its plug-in hybrid $30,000. Production of the all-electric may begin this year and the hybrid in late 2009.