Tesla’s Dutch rival Lightyear gets pre-order of 10,000 units of solar electric car from Arval; generates €840M in sales
January 17, 2023 - Silicon Canals
Netherlands-based Lightyear, a company that develops scalable grid-independent solar electric vehicles, announced that it has signed a pre-order agreement with Arval, a vehicle leasing company and a key player in sustainable mobility solutions owned by the BNP Paribas Group.
According to a statement, 10,000 units of Lightyear 2, the more affordable mass-market version of Lightyear, are included with the pre-order. In Arval’s key European markets, the firm aims to become the new go-to mobility partner for corporate clients and individuals to experience solar-electric mobility.
With this additional pre-order of 10,000 units from Arval, Lightyear says it has reached 21,000 pre-orders from B2B partners, generating close to €840M in revenue.
Lightyear CEO, Lex Hoefsloot, says, “Next to offering our solar electric cars to individual consumers, Arval plays a crucial role as a leasing company in making our technologies available for as many people as possible. We are grateful for their trust and being able to have their expertise and international footprint to roll out Lightyear 2.”
Partnership with Arval
With 1.5 million cars leased by June 2022, Arval specialises in full-service vehicle leasing and novel mobility solutions. The company has 7,500 employees in 30 countries. Founded in 1989, Arval is owned by BNP Paribas. Arval is also a founding member of the Element-Arval Global Alliance, a world leader in the fleet management industry with more than 3 million vehicles across 53 countries.
Arval and Lightyear both share a commitment to sustainable transportation. And with this partnership, Arval intends to help Lightyear’s entry not just into the European market with customer experience events in 2023–2024, but also at an international level.
Alain van Groenendael, Chairman and CEO of Arval, says, “Lightyear’s technology is proven, affordable, and environmentally friendly, making a great addition to our fleet. Our ambition is to lease 700,000 electrified vehicles as part of our global fleet by 2025, and we look forward to welcoming 10,000 Lightyear 2 cars, that help us to reach that goal and more importantly, further support our customers with an optimal solution that answers their energy transition needs and the infrastructure challenge in Europe.”
What does Lightyear 2 offer?
With a solar roof and hood that doubles the car’s range to more than 800 km per charge and requires overall three times less charging than a conventional EV, Lightyear 2 aims to meet consumer needs for convenient clean mobility solutions.
According to the company, Lightyear 2 can possibly support itself on short and medium-distance journeys without the need for a plug, “running on free, clean solar power alone”.
The company also mentions that “Lightyear 2 needs three times fewer charges than a conventional EV because this aerodynamic car does a lot with its energy. That means more time, energy and freedom to travel unanchored by charging infrastructure. And as well as the sun, any power outlet in the world becomes a charging station. Even a regular home socket.”
The company has put the car’s price point below €40,000.
To offer clean, renewable mobility for all
Founded in 2016 by Arjo van der Ham, Koen van Ham, Lex Hoefsloot, Martijn Lammers, and Qurein Biewenga, Lightyear is a tech company developing an ultra-energy-efficient automotive platform.
Through its design and integrated solar cells, the company aims to eliminate the two biggest concerns for electric cars – high charging frequency and limited range. This allows motorists to drive up to 11,000 KMs per year with the power of the sun, depending on the climate.
Currently, the company employs over 600 people and its team is made up of a mix of young talent and experience from the automotive industry, including former employees of Tesla, Audi, and Ferrari.
In June 2022, the company unveiled its production-intent vehicle, the Lightyear 0, which started limited production in November 2022. The subsequent, high-volume series, Lightyear 2, has now opened its waitlist and is slated to start production in 2025, with a full reveal coming in mid-2023.
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