Aptera: Tweaking Electric Vehicle Design, Moving On Up

Aptera is doing some last-minute design tweaks to its space age-looking three-wheeled electric vehicle before the company starts production in the coming months. In a newsletter the Carlsbad, Calif.-based company sent out this morning, Aptera says it has been making refinements to the vehicle that will deliver “the most efficient and safest [version] yet.” The company says it will detail those soon, but sent out a photo of the latest design of the vehicle.

One interesting detail about the car, which the company’s new CEO Paul Wilbur revealed in a brief interview published in the newsletter, is that “there are very few wires inside the vehicle.” Instead the car’s electrical functions are controlled by 45 computer circuit boards — Wilbur says that the circuit boards are lighter than wiring and more reliable.

Aptera is putting the finishing touches on its alternative EV before moving into initial production this year and ramping up manufacturing in 2009. The scaling-up process involved moving, hiring and raising funds. Aptera is in the process of moving into a brand-new bigger headquarters, which will house its offices, R&D facilities and manufacturing. The company announced it had raised $24 million recently in a Series C round from Google.org, Idealab, Esenjay Investments, The Simons Family and The Beall Family Trust. The company also hired 21 new people between May and August.

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