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OBVIO! to Introduce Electric Cars to North America (updated)

The 828.

Brazilian automotive company OBVIO! will develop and introduce lithium-ion-powered electric cars based on its 828 and 012 microsport car designs (earlier post) for export to North America.

OBVIO! has a strategic partnership with California automobile distributor ZAP, which has agreed to be the exclusive North American distributor and has pre-purchased 50,000 OBVIO! units.

The initial versions of the 828 and 012 car designs will be flex-fueled, and will go into production in 2007. The 828E and 012E equipped with electric drive systems will not be far behind, according to OBVIO! President Ricardo Machado.

It is clear to me that electricity has a big future in the auto industry. OBVIO !’s business model of 100 percent outsourced supplier relationships allows for the speed and flexibility to incorporate a new drive system powered by electricity by our second model year.

—Ricardo Machado

The preliminary specifications for the OBVIO! electric cars include a range of 200 to 240 miles, with acceleration from 0 to 60 mph of less than 4.5 seconds and a top speed of 120 mph. A 39 kWh lithium-ion battery system will power the 120 kW (160 hp), 220 Nm (162 lb-ft) electric motor.

A full normal recharge will take five hours, with a fast charge taking two hours. A 30-minute quick charge will provide a 20 to 50 mile range.

OBVIO! is also providing a bi-directional vehicle-to-grid (V2G) interface.

Target prices for the 828E and 012E are $49,000 and $59,000 respectively.



heh nice, more range and similar specs to tesla for a much cheaper price. let's hope this isn't too good to be true.
and as for pricing in general, yeah, unless you drive shitloads of miles per day, there's no way to even come close to recooping the cost of this car. so?


lensovet - "there's no way to even come close to recooping the cost of this car. so?"
That is of course while petrol is available - then what is the value of the car?

BTW - did you notice the important bit - it has a V2G interface.


O.K the cost is high! I'm not totally green but if we can save a little pollution and stop buying bullets for the other side I think I can stand the payments. This site has some fantastic stuff and all of it can help us get off oil but everyone seems to think we can do it without any sacrifice. 13 miles to the gallon is totally self indulging and is going along way to finance terror. The true cost of driving that 1977 pickup is much higher to us (all tax paying citizens) than it is to you. How much in tax dollars has been spent because the Middle East is an area of national security interest. As soon as I can become independent of oil I will. I hate the idea that fore every 35 cents or so at the pump I buy another 5cent bullet to be fired at our troops. Ev technology will not make it unless we support it monetarily. And our troops will have a hard time as long as we support the other side..


ender, what i meant is that the purchase of this car has nothing to do with economics and everything to do with symbolism.
for me, that doesn't really take away from the value of the car at all. but i think it is a point worth noting.

Shaun Williams

Wow, the EV market really appears to be warming up. Looks like Lithium battery technology is going to be the key difference between this century and the last.


I'm in the military. Why is it unthinkable for our government to consider heavily subsidizing EVs to bring them down into consumer range, but acceptable to spend billions of dollars a month to secure our oil supplies? Paint it desert camo, stick a machine gun on it, send it to Iraq, and call it an investment in National Security. Always a market for that.


Hear Hear Rick!!!!!!

You have to wonder why sometimes. I suspect that if you actually ran the number. Once you had the change over done the GDP would actually drop with all electric

any comments?


PS love the Tesla. Go boy Go!!!!!

PPS i watched a program on the BBC one night about a london real estate agent. What a nightmare getting around the city. I can se that it was an absolute no brainer for an estate agent with parking at the office to do the smart EV thing. Absolutley logical. I bet the do alright out of it money wise notwithstanding the lease pricing.


Burtt: If you do the calucaltions based on the War in Iraq alone, we are paying a whole lot more than 5 cents for bullets for every 35 Cents in gasoline taxes.

Mikey: You bring up a great point, and one reason the Government doesn't want to wean us off oil, or off wars. Both contribute the the GDP, and that is how we measure economic health. We would all be better off with less GDP and more functional, productive (not necessarily mearured in $s) assets. It is the same with safety. If we could move to PRT for half our transport, that would cut accidents and injuries, which cost $millions. But that would reduce GDP, which would make things look bad. Interesting challenge.


JM: I know we pay alot more in our tax dollars for the war for our side. That five cents is what we pay to the middle east oil producers that filters down to the enemy. they in turn buy ammo so the can shoot at our men and women in uniform. The piont is we are supporting the other side when we buy gas.


Andrey: sorry, you have confused their next product with the swimming dirigible.

Actually batteries are coming on strongly now. They certainly should after 150 years of little progress. We are going to see a lot of EVs at competitive prices. The question is the battery cost curve. My guess - real sales start in 2009.

Ron C. Row

University of Toronto is working on solar cells that convert electricity from ultra-violet light. ultra-violet light is everywhers even in the shade. when this happens solar cells will be painted on an auto using nano technology and the actual body of the car will become a huge solar cell to power electric motors for cars. go to google and type in ultra violet solar cell for more information.


I remember when Honda came out with the 6 cylinder Accord hybrid. Many people on this site predicted that they missed the sweet spot of hybrid buyers . And that turned out to be right.
I also remember when Toyota came out with the 4 cylinder Camry hybrid and many people on this site predicted that they hit the sweet spot. And, so far, that appears to be correct.
To me, “0 to 60 in 4.5 seconds and top speed of 120 mph” is missing the sweet spot for a car that doesn’t look like a sports car.
I hope they succeed, but….

Uncle Sam

I think our military friend hit on the important question of why the government doesn't get behind EV's. It's the tremendous ammount of taxes that would be lost at the gas pumps. And this is the same reason they are pushing hydrogyn, it can be taxed. Sure, electricity is taxed, but not nearly at the rate gas is taxed. Over 50 cents on every gallon I buy is taxes. Now, multiply that by the millions of us that are driving these dinasours. If we all started plugging in, the tax loss would be incredible. Politicians would have to actually try and curb spending!

Whatever happened to the U.S. battery consortium? A supposed joint effort between the federal government and the big 3? Seems as if there is all this battery technology breaking all around us, they would be at the fore front of the action. Strangely silent.

I don't think they can squash this EV movement though. There are too many players, Tesla, Zap, Obvio, and I hear that Mitsubishi is moving up their Japan release of a 100% EV that gets about 175 miles per charge. And more jumping on board all the time. I predict we will see a burst in the damn here pretty quick!

I am sick and tired of all this miceast crisis stuff that we are paying for, and I am sick and tired of funding it at the gas pump. And I am sick and tired of paying gas taxes after my income and property has already been taxed. Enough already. This is the most patriotic thing we as Americans can do at this moment in history. We can make a difference. Small at first, but when it starts catching on, Watch Out! The future is electric!


I think they may make a marketing mistake when they forget the Prius effect. The success of the Prius is in large part due to the fact that every Prius is a hybrid, so everyone can see you are different, an in what way you are different.

The Obvio will be available as an ordinary petrol car first, and then as an EV. The people prepared to shell out big bucks for an EV do so because they want to be different (green). But they also want TO BE SEEN different. The existence of a similar $ 40.000 cheaper petrol version of the same car will take away most of the green/different aura of the EV model.

This is worsened by the fact that the EV version is available later than the petrol version. The buyers will not get the feeling of buying the very very latest technology, which is just as important as the feeling of buying a green car.

I sure hope they won't make that mistake and use a completely new design for the EV version.


Though the Obvio! may.. or may not be the leak that finally broke the dam for domestic availablity of EVs in this country, I would think that now would be a good time to invest in American co.s that are involved in production of the latest bulk battery technologies- namely NiMH & Li-based cells. I know of 2 such co.s, one of which already produces NiMH 'blocks' for NASA, the Army & soon the Air Force (currently being developed). Best of all, they both have production capabilities here in the continental U.S. with room to expand.
Shipping EV subcompacts in for now & loading 'em w/ U.S. made hi-tech batteries would seem... Obvious! :)~


If EV hybrids are the future and there is GDP/tax loss concerns from energy security, just grow biodiesel & make Li batteries, solar panels, etc to substitute ! GDP & Tax will stabilise...
The current EV high prices, though of concern, will eventually come to consumer levels, when the above conditions are solved first.
For range concerns, perhaps in future in place of parking meters there'll be charging outlets instead... LOL


I think the key is the availability of a practical EV at the $14K price point. I picture a Geo Sprint type body volume, 200mi range, light construction, but simple, robust practicality. Sounds like an Obvio with half the performance. Forward-thinking styling would help sell. But in sum, the price is currently exclusive to the masses for which such a car makes perfect sense.
It seems that EVs could be simpler vehicles, engineering-wise, than our current internal combustion cars. Production at similar costs should be achievable.


Obvio makes two types of cars. 828, and the 828E version, and the 012, and o12E version. The E stands for electric, (OBVIOusly).

828# is NOT $59,000. it is $49,000. the 828 is $14,000.

012E is $59,000. you can find these on ZAPs website, at The 012 and 012E look a lot
better than the 828, which to me looks like a life size version of a toy.

012 has a maxium speed of 160mph. 0-60 in 4.5 seconds.

012E has a maxium speed of 120mph, with a range of 200-240miles. acceleration is said to be the same. more information can be found at

This is all B.S.

We already had a successful, plug in, all electric vehicle in the USA....(EV1) in 1996, yet we are still debating over what type of fuel to use. With the new Lithium ion batteries and nano techs we should already have an *AFFORDABLE* plug in, all electric, vehicle with a range of 200+ miles. Its all a scam... the government and big business do not want efficient cars...there's no $$$ in it for them, why would they? What we need is a private company to start making ***affordable*** long range electric cars and when the time comes they need to hold the line and not sell out to the government or big business.

This is all B.S.

The 828 is $14,000
828e(electric vehicle) is $49,000

012 $28,000
012e-(EV) is $59,000

In other words electric vehicles will not be affordable/available to the general public.....again. The United States should be ashamed....we boast freedom yet we are not free from oppressive big business/government. With gas prices at $3-4 a gallon for the past year, America is ready for plug-in electric vehicles. I only wish i had the mechanical ability and the money to start my own company.

R. Cohn

You want my take on this? The US government will HAVE to take notice when it comes to it's ethanol senses. How much
MORE than speculated are we as taxpayers going to have to spend for the conversion? God only knows it's never
what they say it's going to be.
I believe the answer lies somewhere in thermocouples and
superconductivity. Create a voltage from two dissimilar
metals, keep it cold enough . .and viola' the next new
deal that's been starting jet engines for decades.

tesla roadster rules

Dear "This is all B.S.",

The ev1 was not successful. In fact, it lost a ton of money per vehicle. Oh, unless you measure success by how much celebrities cry when you take their toys away. If this little POS is any indicator, then obviously the TECHONOLOGY IS STILL NOT QUITE THERE YET or else this thing, that can maybe fit half a midget, wouldn't cost $49k. Get a grip on reality.

That said, the Tesla roadster looks very sweet, but I am skeptical they can get it down to the $80k they are predicting.



"with the new Lithium ion batteries and nano techs we should already have an *AFFORDABLE* plug in, all electric, vehicle with a range of 200+ miles. Its all a scam."

No, YOU are the scammer by acting like it is all so easy and some dark forces are stopping it. Nonsense. EVs are expensive because the batteries are expensive. The batteries are epxensive because high-density energy storage is NOT easy. These cars are $50k to $80k instead of $15,000 because to get 200 miles of range you need 50KWH of storage, either thousands of pounds of lead-acid battery - which makes the car act like a boat anchor (see EV1) or nearly 1000lbs of Li-ion battery, which costs around $40,000 (eg Tesla car).

Go ahead. Make our day. Build a better battery, cut the cots by 10X and you can be the world's next Bill Gates. Millions will buy it if you make a better energy storage device. Nobody is stopping you, and if you say otherwise you are full of it.

It's no great conspiracy, it's reality.

"the government and big business do not want efficient cars" -- More nonsense. Since when is it 'big business' job to 'want' something, other than to want to make a profit by serving customers. Their responsibility is to customers and shareholders. If *YOU* are willing to pay for it, it will get built.
If *YOU* demand it be cheaper, either it will get built at that price or not at all. There's plenty of EV tinkerers to build a cheaper EV *IF IT IS POSSIBLE*.

As for Govt: We spend billions on alternative fuels, billions on EV research, fuel cell cars, etc etc. Freedom Car initiative is $1 billion and add to that NASA, Los Alamos and other places doing research. Most of Govt R&D money is inevitably wasted since the best magnet for innovation is the free market.

VC funded startups like EEStor and Tesla Motors and companies like Honda and Toyota are leading the way, creating customer-focussed innovations, and the winners are those that apply innovations to serve markets and needs that people demand.
Nobody can or will stop those innovators, and nobody will stop you if you have something useful in the marketplace - of products or ideas.

It's the way the world works. Get used to it.

"...there's no $$$ in it for them, why would they?"
Think outside the box. There is *always* $$$ for a better mousetrap. If your presumption that something 'wonderful' didnt catch on in marketplace, dont construct a phony conspiracy theory, rethink a little - maybe the product just wasnt that ready for real use to start with.

Someday EVs will replace the ICE gasoline-based cars. Someday. But not before the technology is there to make it a cost-effective reality. It's seems that day is within sight.


Someome asked why military isnt using this. Well, DoD has been funding EVs and alternative vehicle systems. eg look here, the DARPA-funded motor used to make the Hummvee hybrid:

Thomas Frost

its a nice idea but at $60,000 for this car it will not catch on in the mainstream market place.
if they can get the price down to $10,000 or less i can see there being one in every drive way.

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