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Maker of 3-Wheel Plug-In Hybrid Closes $6M Round

The VentureOne.

Venture Vehicles Inc., the developer of a 2-passenger, 3-wheel, tilting, plug-in series hybrid electric and full battery electric vehicle—the VentureOne (earlier post)— has closed $6 million in Series A financing from NGEN Partners.

Two in-wheel 25 kW electric pancake motors will power the two rear wheels, with a small (15 to 20 kW) flex-fuel genset providing on-road recharging for the plug-in model. The hybrid will use a 3 kWh Li-ion pack. The all-electric version is planned to have two in-wheel 20 kW electric motors and a 17 kWh li-ion battery pack.

As a result of the financing, NGEN members Steve Parry and Robert Koch will join chief executive officer Howard Levine and co-founder Ian Bruce on the board of directors.

Venture Vehicles holds the exclusive North American license to the patented three-wheel tilt steering technology developed in Europe by Carver Engineering for hybrid and electric vehicles, as well as a non-exclusive agreement for development of flex fuel vehicles.

Utilizing this unique tilt technology, Venture Vehicles will redesign the vehicle, replacing its gasoline engine with both electric powered and hybrid versions that are targeted to achieve 100 mpg and 100 mph.

The company’s first vehicles, planned for launch in 2009, are being developed with a world-class team of strategic partners including Swift Engineering, Cal Motors and Automotive Marketing Consultants Inc. (AMCI).

Swift Engineering is a designer of racing platforms with specific experience in three-wheel vehicle development, and Cal Motors is a leader in electric vehicle drive trains. AMCI is an automotive consulting and marketing firm specializing in consumer drive events, dealer education, vehicle testing and OEM employee motivation.

Venture Vehicles will source assemblies and sub-assemblies offshore and then assemble the vehicles in the United States. The company is currently looking at manufacturing facility opportunities in Southern California and New Mexico.



How many miles per kWh?


Their website has a chart comparing the different models. Click on Concept. The cheapest hybrid, $18K, also has the greatest range. In EV mode it only goes 20 miles using the 3 KWh battery. The all electric model supposedly has 120 mile range. Even though it's a 2 person vehicle I think they based their calculations on 1 person. I think it would be a great commuter and for running errands on the weekend but I wouldn't use it for a road trip.


Of course you wouldn't use it for long distance, most driving is done within 30-40 miles per day. Great to see this design.

Bob Tasa

I LOVE this thing. I watched the video of it months ago. Its a completely new way to get around. I dont
mind the one pasenger part but the saftey is a bit
of a worry as it is an enclosed 3wheel motor cycle.
BUT AWESOME looking fun and 120 miles is just fine by
me. I could take it for a 90 mile round trip to and from work every day :)
Just wonder if it has Heat and Air? I dont care about the radio as those are simple to install..
Heat and air are much harder. In the Midwest it gets both hot and cold.


Gray looks great in the artist's conception, but I really think the smaller something is the brighter it should be. Not sure if I'd really go for one ... but if I did, bright yellow.

(So the SUV drivers see it out of the corner of their eye.)


Great looking ride. Hope it pans out.

Bob Bastard

I really hope these get produced. If they can build them starting at $18K, I'll definitely consider one.

Rafael Seidl

@ Bob Tasa -

it will have HVAC.

From their FAQ: "The HVAC systems we're considering is a Denso solution used in the Toyota Prius and other hybrid vehicles."


The artist's conception drawing is not to scale. The dimensions of the vehicle are planned to be approximately:

140" L x 40" W x 56" H

Max Reid

We have to compare this with Honda Impact which is a hybrid with 21K price tag, 2-seater.

Many people did not buy that, since most of the families have 3-4 members.

Well this vehicle is 3K lesser and can be charged from the grid, thats the advantage

but, being a 3-wheeler, people may look differently.

Lets see how it goes.


Fully rad. Reminds me of the vehicles in Minority Report.


Someone in my office here in Wisconsin looked into getting one of these. What I understand happened is that it is too heavy to be classified as a motorcycle, but 3-wheeled cars are not legal in this state.


They would have to be shown to be crash safe. After that you would hear lots of reasons why this is not practical for most families and so on.

Two seater autos have sold in a niche for a long time. If you just commute and go around town, they would work. If you want to go on a long trip, rent a car on the weekends and get a good rental rate.


They would have to be shown to be crash safe. After that you would hear lots of reasons why this is not practical for most families and so on.

Yet there's hundreds of millions of motorcycles and scooters on the road worldwide.


You Tube video's show this thing running and explain that is weighs 1200lbs and will have air bags and side
impact rails. Hmm.. I have 3 kids but we have a ICE vehicle to load up the group and them places.
With the right kind of planing it would make a great commuter car. FUN and I can load some grocerys in the back seat. :-)
In 2009/2010 it will have to comete against a new Prius and maybe even a volt but I have to admit it looks VERY cool and might start the avalanche of change (fingers crossed)


@ Max Reid

What is a Honda Impact? Web site?

P Schager

Honda Impact? Honda Insight.

That car didn't have PHEV capability or nearly as much speed, parkability, flexibility, distinctiveness, novelty, volume manufacturability or efficiency as this is to have. Plus the VentureOne comes from a maker who has no reason to hold anything back to protect other models, placate business partners, stay conservative, or pursue built-in obsolescence. And as a US maker of a product that pounds oil dependence into the ground, they stand to make our PTB's ask much harder questions about why we still need to indulge Detroit's pro-guzzler paradigm to keep America in the passenger vehicle business.


If it can make coffee then it will chil fritos. Talk about game on yeah

There is certainly a major niche market for this type of vehicle. Ideal for most to drive to work. For Mrs to go shoping. For teens to drive around (or to school) without creating much harmful air and sound pollution.

Of course, a bigger (4-wheel) PHEV would still be required to drive a familly around.

A USA family could have a couple of those electric 3-wheelers + a PHEV.


...but on the other side:

Jeff R

My next car, I hope. The great thing about this (from the Carver videos, at least) is that it looks incredibly FUN. Like the Tesla, it changes the paradigm toward green being kick-ass as well as nice and sensible in other ways. Of course I wish the thing could accommodate two adults side by side, while still tilting, but I know that's impossible. (I just know my wife and I will be fighting over who has to sit in that little back seat.) I wonder if they can make it longer than 12 feet.


Why do folks knock the Honda Insight? I have 130K miles and still get 65 mpg. I commute to work 90 miles alternate days with a carpool buddy. If I hit lottery, will get a Tesla, but more likely a PHEV Toyota is in my future. I would consider one of these 3-wheelers if they are safe.


I believe this will be a great fun car for people who would like a safe motorcycle,especially geriatrics.This will compete effectively with the big 3 wheel motorcycles.We old people have a need for more enjoyment in our lives and this Venture Vehicle may be just the thing!

Jim Stanley

Hi Can you please let me know if these vehicles are in full production, the market value to purchase one and if you have intentions to introduce them into the Australian market?

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