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Commuter Cars reveals its ultra-narrow Tango electric vehicle at 2010 NAIAS

PHOTO BY MICHELE K. / ©AMERICAJR.com

The Tango is an ultra-narrow electric sports car initially designed and built by Commuter Cars, an American company based in Spokane, Washington, that sells this car worldwide for $108,000.

by Michele K.

michelek@mac.com

 

DETROIT -- Tony, the Customer Service rep for the Electric Vehicle lines, said this was her first auto show job. She told me that there were four electric vehicles there but only two were running at the moment (perhaps charging the other two). They charge them at the other end of the track.

She said that the Tango was the most popular car and it was getting the most attention. The man from Tango (let’s call him Tony) let me sit in the back for a ride (next year I am taking advantage of the Monday with the offer of driving it on media day).

I am a short small person and I had to squeeze into it. There was no foot room, so I had to straddle the drivers seat. Tony said it will go up to 135 mph and there is direct drive no shifting. There are 2,000 pounds of batteries in this car. It has a carbon fiber body that weighs 25 lbs. The center of the Tango weighs as much as a Toyota Camry, and is 5” narrower than a Honda Goldwing motorcycle, without the downfalls, you can park sideways between cars.

It can go up to 200 miles on one charge, battery dependent. It takes about an hour to recharge it. They have sold 12 of these cars and the first one was purchased by George Clooney in 2005.

The first couple of cars took one year each to build since right now they are being built by hand. They have gotten it down to one per month. It handles excellent in the snow, one time in Canada they had 25” of snow and they didn’t want to plow, so they just drove their Tango thru the snow throwing 25” of snow up in the air and cleared the driveway.

Once they mass produce this car (if they had 150 million dollars) they could build 10,000 a year for a cost of $29,000 but right now they are being hand built and cost $151,000. The higher the funding, the more production, the lower the cost. Their goal is mass production. This was also my favorite non-American car.

 

PHOTO BY MICHELE K. / ©AMERICAJR.com

Actor George Clooney took delivery of the first Tango kit on August 9, 2005, which was a major milestone for the company. Clooney appeared in the press with the car, explaining and promoting it.

 

PHOTO BY MICHELE K. / ©AMERICAJR.com

The T200 model is expected to be eventually released at $40,000, while the T100 is expected with a $19,000 price tag.

 

This page was last updated on Sat, January 16, 2010 2:42 PM

 

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