Within the next year, Elio Motors hopes to begin production of its as-yet-unnamed 84 MPG trike, and when it does launch, buyers will have the option of connecting to the cloud thanks to a just-signed deal with Infinite Skyz. This will enable Elio owners to utilize all sorts of connected car features include remote start, lock/unlock, navigation, and in-car phone calls.
Priced at $6,800, the three-wheeled Elio is aiming squarely for the lower end of the market where people are primarily concerned with costs and fuel economy. But the deal with Infinite Skyz gives them access to the SkyzMatic cloud, which will use buyer’s cell phones to provide most of these features and adds the kind of connectivity you’d expect from a high-end conventional car.
In-vehicle WiFi, bluetooth, and power everything will be possible. Parents can even monitor their kids driving habits on-the-go, so if little Timmy has a lead foot you can call and tell him to cool his jets. The features will even be compatible with the Apple Watch, something only BMW has thus far announced.
If all these features sound like they’re gonna cost you, well, you’re right; Elio estimates that these additional features will add between $1,500 and $2,000 to the price of their low-cost trike. That’s quite a chunk of change for the low-cost trike, though one could just as easily argue that all the money you’ll save on gasoline will more than cover the added features. And I don’t really have a counter-argument for that. With the first round of DOE Funding passed, Elio’s future seems brighter by the day.