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A Salute to Monaco's Venturi Automobiles
Recently, Monaco-based auto pioneers Venturi brought the final version of their kick-ass Eclectic to the Ecological Vehicles and Renewable Energies Show (EVER) in Monaco. The updated Venturi Eclectic lost some of its original inspiration but for so many reasons the Eclectic will go down in history as one of the great Future Cars of all time.
On that note, let's take a little trip through Venturi's catalog (all pics from the Venturi site), beginning with the Astrolab, a killer solar-electric hybrid ...
The first and likely easily most unique high-performance solar-electric hybrid in the world, the Venturi Astrolab uses 3.6 square meters of photovoltaic cells to power a 16 kWc motor to reach top speeds of around 120 km/h. Loved the Astrolab a while back, still think highly of this oddball. The picture on the right is a great shot of the Astrolab taken from the view of the back tandem seat- it gives you a better look at the PV cells that provide power to the electric motor.
Powered by a 220 kw central rear-mounted electric motor and 45 kWh lithium polymer batteries, the Fetish can go zero to 60 in under 4 seconds, reach a top speed of 111 mph (180 km/h) and has an all-electric range of 180 miles (290 km). Production limited to 25 vehicles, hand-built in Monaco, for delivery in Monaco. Cost? €297000 Euro, or around $415,000.
Powered by four wheel-motors of 55 kW each for a total output of 220 kW and 45 kWh lithium polymer batteries, the highly aerodynamic Venturi Volage ("fashioned by the wind", says Venturi chief designer Sacha Lakic) can go zero to 60 in under 5 seconds, reach a top speed of 93 mph (150 km/h) and has an approximate all-electric range of close to 200 miles (320 km). Venturi's 'Ultimate Electric GT' premiered at the 2008 Paris Motorshow.
Like virtually everything else they make, the Venturi Longboard is a limited edition item, in this case limited to just 200. I don't know much about longboards; all I know is that it's made of carbon fiber and designed by Sacha Lakic—the chief designer behind all of Venturi's vehicles.
Check out more of designer Sacha Lakic's work at his website, www.lakic.com.
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