The Dutch start-up Lightyear is developing an exclusive, 5-seater, long-range solar-electric car. The 4-wheel drive with integrated solar cells allows you to drive for weeks or even months without charging, depending on your location.

Lightyear’s long term ambition is to develop mass-market solar electric cars and offer a sustainable solution for the growing worldwide mobility needs. Solar electric cars  circumvent the difficulty of developing a charging infrastructure by using just the sun and ordinary power sockets as an energy source. A Lightyear One’s charging capacity from an ordinary power socket is equivalent to an EV Charging station.

Series A funding closed

Lightyear successfully closed its planned series A funding round in just 1,5 months.
Qurein Biewenga, CFO of Lightyear; “It has been really amazing and motivating to see the genuine interest and support we have received in the last months. This series A funding round was actually oversubscribed in a shorter period than anticipated. The best aspect was the interest and support we have received from our current and new shareholders as well as our Signature and Pioneer buyers. Their positive feedback and help is a great resource for us”.

Lightyear is soon opening a next funding round that will further enable the production of the first series to be delivered in 2020.

A car redesigned from the ground up

Lex Hoefsloot, CEO of Lightyear; “A solar-electric car is one integral system, not just an electric car with a solar cells on the roof. The car becomes an independent entity since the energy source is integrated into the car itself. In order to make the concept technically feasible the car needs to be incredibly efficient. This requires a redesign of the chassis, powertrain and aerodynamics. Therefore, over the last years we have developed a complete native solar-electric platform. With this platform we reach an energy efficiency up to 3x higher than current EV’s in the market. This efficiency, combined with our PV solar technology makes a solar-electric car a viable solution for millions of users worldwide”.

To advise Lightyear on the substantial engineering effort that comes with developing a new car, Lightyear announced a partnership with EDAG, one of the leading automotive engineering companies worldwide, last monday at the Hannover Messe. EDAG will provide Lightyear resources and expertise in the engineering phase. The first prototype is expected to be ready early 2019.

Andreas Quanz, VP EDAG; “We are very happy to sign this agreement with this exciting new car company Lightyear. Their cutting edge knowledge of photovoltaic systems and high efficiency car technology combined with our solid experience and knowledge of automotive engineering and production is the ideal combination to make this amazing car a reality”. “We have been following Lightyear for almost a year now and we are convinced that this team will make this happen. We are happy to contribute to this great new development, a first in the world of this level”.

Production facility
Lightyear is also very proud to announce the start of the building process of an office and production facility on the Automotive Campus in Helmond. Delivery of the facility is planned for the 1st of August.

The Lightyear One prototypes as well as the first series will be produced in this production facility before scale up to larger series production.

About Lightyear
Lightyear develops solar-electric cars for consumers. Currently there are over 40 engineers working on the development of the Lightyear One. First deliveries are planned for 2020. Lightyear Ones can be pre-ordered starting at €4.000,-. Deliveries for the first model are currently only planned for Europe.

About EDAG
EDAG  is an  independent  engineering services  provider to the global automotive industry. The company serves leading domestic and international vehicle OEMs and sophisticated  automotive suppliers  through a global network of about 60 sites in major automotive centers of the world. EDAG offers  complementary  engineering services across its Vehicle Engineering, Electric/Electronics and Production Solutions businesses.