The Sono Motors Sion solar EV is on paper one of the most promising affordable EVs set to debut in Europe in the near future. However, even with its expected low price, prospect of hardly ever having to charge it in sunnier climates, the company seems ready to pull the plug on the Sion project, in order for it to focus on the more lucrative prospect of selling its tech to third parties directly instead of implementing it in a complex product like an automobile.
Sono just launched a 50 day campaign called $saveSion through which it is trying one last time to keep people’s interested in the Sion and convince those who have already put their name down for one to stick with their reservation and actually buy the vehicle. It’s doing this just in order to make sure that it can put the vehicle into production next year as planned.
The startup already has over 20,000 reservations for the Sion (as well as many more from fleet buyers), which earlier this year was shown in its production-intent form, basically the finished production vehicle that should start rolling off the production line at the Valmet factory in Finland 2023, before ramping up to full production in 2024. However, that plan sounds like it may be in jeopardy now.
Sono announced during its Q3 2022 earnings call earlier this week that
Financial markets have experienced a negative downturn, with many tech companies losing up to 90+% of their respective market cap, and shares in mobility tech companies have been hit particularly hard. As a result, financing our Sion program through equity has become increasingly challenging and dilutive. Raising money takes much longer than expected, since we failed to explain to investors why the Sion has the potential to become the world’s first affordable solar-electric vehicle and that there is a huge demand for it.
Even so, the fact that Sono has come so far with the Sion SEV project is remarkable and it has surely won fans along the way, many of which have probably already committed to buying the vehicle. It was even flown to the US where it was very well received, but it did not bring the company the capital injection that it was perhaps hoping for.
The company says it needs 3,500 more orders – you can reserve a Sono Motors Sion with a 3,000 euro deposit.
Make sure to check out the video we embedded in the opening of the article – it is an official video from Sono and it features the company’s two co-founders admitting that they have failed in raising money to make the Sion happen – it is a very unusual type of video the likes of which we’ve probably never featured on the site, but it’s still worth a watch.