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ZAP Introduces 3-Wheeled Electric City Car


ZAP introduced an electric three-wheeled city car, the XEBRA, at the San Francisco International Auto Show.

ZAP, the seller of an Americanized version of the smart car, has entered into a manufacturing contract with a Chinese automaker to produce the vehicle. The company is currently taking advance orders on the car, which it lists for $8,995.

The XEBRA seats four and has a range of up to 40 miles (65 kilometers) and a top speed of 40 mph (65 km/h). It uses a DC motor powered by a lead-acid battery pack.

The company also is displaying its hydrogen fuel-cell Worldcar, powered by an Anuvu fuel cell stack, and a prototype of the new flex-fuel OBVIO!. (Earlier post.)



This is just retarded. Why bother selling an electric car with worthless lead-acid batteries?

I can't imagine anyone would buy one of these; Just get a golf cart.

little shop

I am always amazed at the markup zap gets (or does not get) on its products. These things are 1/3 the price in china. And at $5000 they may sell a good # and make a good markup. People could use it to replace a second car with one, but not at $9000, thats just too much. There is a market for a car that goes 40mph but there is 10x a market for one that can do 55mph.


Cars like this are giving genuine electric and hybrid electric cars a bad name in the eyes of the public.


It does look like it's on the verge of a spontaneous wheelie, doesn't it?

I suspect it has much better aerodynamics than a golf cart and is street legal up to higher speeds. Lead, well, unless you want to pay a whole bunch more there really isn't much choice in this price range.


EV Convert


Why all this toy-like small EV-cars? Who wants to be in a crash with this ? And why 4 seats and lead acid ?
Take a good base for a city car, like the Smart, and elctrify it with LiIon Batteries, like the ones from Valence or Saft... It all exist and there is a market, we only need an large company to open its eyes...

orville lynner

This vehicle matches the needs of a small niche market.
They are not just talking and waiting for someone else to do it.
They are doing!!!!

A big pickup does not match my needs, so should I criticise pickups?

This is just one more small part of the solution to where we must go....

When better batteries are here, there will likely be replacement packs available. But for now they are DOING... Thank you


ZAP needs to die. The whole Smart thing turned in to a huge fiasco. This thing is just pathetic. I mean what happends when you hit a dog let alone another vehicle? Did they federalize this POS? Look the the jelly bean tripod.


I think Morgan engineeered the 3 wheeled car concept correctly back in the early 1900's with the 2 wheels in front.


Oh my goodness, another ridiculous Kindergarten e-car. What a waste of time and energy.


Reminds me of my first tri-cycle. I put it behind the wheel of my dad's car after falling over every time I tried to turn a sharp corner.

This thing will too.

What a waste!


Yeah you can take a Smart, add LiIon, Siemens, Saft, etc.
That makes a $20k car into a $50k one. That's a bit
different from taking a $3k golf cart and turning it into
a $9k one, and the market for $50k EVs is a bit different
from the market for $5k ones.


"40 miles (665 kilometers)"
uhh, certainly something wrong here.


Gosh, do they really planning to sell this thing? Oh-mi-gosh, does anyone really planning to buy this thing?

This thing looks perfectly imbalance to me, it will certainly roll if you took a sharp turn. Feel like someone put a car casing onto a tri-motorcycle.


I want a car with 8 wheels. When you stop in traffic the wheels can extend out and it can walk over other cars like a giant spider.

You see, I can have stupid impractical ideas too. With ZAP's help and initiative an "impractical overpriced concept" of the spider car could also be built.


Thanks for the typo-spotting!

Ron Fischer

Only reason for 3 wheels may be to register it as motorcycle. Harley Trihawk was a high performance 3 wheel motorcycle (two wheels in front). GM showed 'Lean Machine' concept commuter vehicle back in 80s. No matter the price of fuel, society will find ways to stay as mobile as it is now.

little shop

I dont want Zap to die, I just wish they would either not be so greedy or just think one notch bigger. Price the thing a little less. The most promising thing I have seen is the Tango at http://www.commutercars.com/ . While it is more expensive it promises good performance and safety.

While the smart thing is a fiasco, I think them bringing them in the US would open peoples eyes. I personally see a scenario where zap brings them in, they do well and take off, then Mercedes/Smart brings em in themselves and CRUSHES zap.


Cars like this are giving genuine electric and hybrid electric cars a bad name in the eyes of the public.
This is not making a lot of sense. When will he Li Ion
version of a real car come out? There is the Maya 100 or is that 1000. Why cant the US give a big rebate on
Electric batteries for the first X buyes? That might stimulate the market enough to reduce the cost for real.



Hopefully Mitsubishi can pull it off with their Colt EV.

Gil Dawson

Aw, c'mon! There are lots of people who can't (or soon won't be able to) afford gas and would love this thing. Besides, American cars are too big, anyway.

As for crashing, well, perhaps we need some balancing premiums or tax increases for the greater damage larger cars do. Maybe someday most of us will have cars like this and we will all have more room to park.

Speaking of parking, can you imagine what a parking garage would look like if it were designed to park only electric cars? Ventilation would not be necessary, for one thing.

Harvey D

I guess we will have to wait the arrival of extended life, cheaper, higher power density, light weight, quick charge, safer, lithium based batteries such as the A123 Systems, Altair or Toshiba or equivalent units before we see practical regular size PHEVs and EVs on the road.

The Electrovaya Maya 100 is an early start with good lithium super polymer batteries that could be improved with the latest high performance cheaper batteries.

To bring the individual cells or the complete battery pack price down they will have to be built where labour is cheap and plenty, and we all know where....

Who will be the first to roll it out?


I think ZAP did well to introduce a car like this...America needs this. How many do you think that they are going to sell? I think it will be a hit for ZAP.


Just one question, this works all good and well in california etc, but what about NY, and DC, you can't park anywhere over here in major east coast cities. What about apartments etc?


Did anyone even watch "Who Killed the Electric Car" movie? If not, then you need to watch it on DVD. We had a Great Electric car back in 1990-98 GM built a Great electric car called the EV-1 and did not want anyone to know about it. The car was too good. It even never had to have the brakes changed in the 10 years it was on the road. Then they took them all back from the people who leased them and Crushed & Destroyed every one of them! What do you think they are trying to hide???
No Oil, No Gas, No Spark Plugs, No Muffler, No Transmission, No Engine, No Fan Belt, No Smog Checks, No Adding Water, No overheating....Ect Ect.. They would loose BILLIONS of dollars just in selling us parts. Wake Up People!!! Go to www.teslamotors.com and see a Real Electric Car!


IF you are looking at Zap and the Xebra Please read this review here.

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