TEEWave AR1: Japan Gets New Electric Sports Car

Tesla is getting some competition from Japan: Tokyo-based chemicals giant Toray has taken the wraps off Teewave AR1 (short for “Toray Eco Efficient Advanced Roadstar 1”), a two-seat sports car over the weekend.

The company invested a total of US$3.8 million in the development of the electric vehicle whose main selling point is its low weight: Toray used carbon fiber reinforced plastic in the floor, frame and other parts of the car to make it as light as possible.

The prototype weighs just 846kg (including the battery), which is about one third less than similar vehicles and leads to less energy consumption (11.6km/kWh), according to the company. It reaches a top speed of 147km/h and offers a travel range of 185km.

Toray cooperated with UK-based car design agency Gordon Murray in the development of the Teewave AR1. The plan is to commercialize car parts using carbon fiber reinforced plastic by 2015.

Via Sankei News [JP]