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Tiny EV goes from street to office

2012-05-02 07:47

CUTE AND FUNCTIONAL: The Volpe is road-legal and will go on sale in Europe from 2013.

Is this the most functional city car yet? This little Italian creation is called the Volpe (fox, in Italian) and is small enough to fit into a lift and you can drive it anywhere from the road to right up to your desk. Look good to you?

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The Volpe (which is an acronym for Veicoli Originali Leggeri Privi Emissioni meaning Original Zero-emission Light Vehicle) is the creation of Italian Romano Artioli, who also happens to be the former owner of the Bugatti and Lotus brands. It was styled by Italian coachbuilder Zagato.

Following on from the original Volpe (launched in 2005), the latest version is just a metre wide, which allows it to squeeze into the tightest gaps... such as the office lifts. It's 1.5m tall so you won’t need to be completely hunched over while driving it.


The Volpe, however, is definitely not designed to take you to your annual holiday spot – it doesn’t offer much luggage space, has a top speed of only 50km/h and, running on electric power, a range of 60km. It can also run on petrol or natural gas and has a solar panel.

Isabella Artioli, vice-president of Volpe, says: ‘Volpe is for every urban dweller desiring to move around town in style, independently, without losing time in traffic and looking for parking.

The little Volpe is classified as a quadricycle and is road-legal, meaning Europeans as young as 16 will be able to drive it with a motorcycle licence when it is launched across the Continent in early 2013.

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