Federal “Autocycle” Legislation Creates Consistent Rules Across the Country, Benefits Consumers by Eliminating Ambiguity From State to State, According to Elio Motors CEO
Enclosed, three-wheel vehicle a unique disruptive product, needs its own rules
Troy, Mich., March 27, 2015 – It is a common perception that most businesses and entrepreneurs view federal legislation as something that can stifle growth and innovation. But, Paul Elio, CEO of start-up transportation company Elio Motors, welcomes proposed legislation aimed at a product category he has helped create.
Sen. David Vitter (R, La.) recently proposed the Autocycle Safety Act that creates Federal rules to cover three-wheeled enclosed vehicles. Currently, any vehicle with less than four wheels is considered a motorcycle by the Federal government. But, the enclosed, three-wheeled vehicle such as the one being developed by Elio Motors, has many of the same attributes as a passenger car.
“I’ve been asked by many people why we support regulation,” Elio said. “We are already building this vehicle to the highest safety standards in the auto industry, so the legislation won’t impact our design or add cost to the vehicle. It will be good for consumers, because they will know they can cross state lines and have a consistent set of standards that cover their vehicle.”
Elio pointed to helmet laws as an example of why this legislation is important. It is safer for a motorcycle rider to wear a helmet, but in an enclosed environment such as the Elio, passengers are safer without a helmet. Elio has been working state-by-state to change motorcycle helmet laws, but many consumers remain confused about the regulation where they live. A Federal regulation covering autocycles will clear up this ambiguity.
Elio said it is important for lawmakers to keep pace with innovation and disruption in the marketplace. The vehicle from Elio Motors is unlike anything on the market today and will change how consumers think about commuting and vehicle ownership. With its unique front-to-back two-person seating, an expected cost of $6,800 and up to 84 MPG, the Elio will be a low-cost, highly efficient commuter vehicle. Paul Elio refers to it as an “and” vehicle – consumers will keep their SUV, truck or minivan for the utility needed on the weekend, AND own an Elio for solo commutes to work during the week. Much like Apple has completely altered mobile communication with the iPhone, Elio Motors aims to change consumer mindsets relative to transportation.
“We applaud Sen. Vitter for recognizing the autocycle is an innovation that is going to disrupt the status quo in the auto industry,” Elio said. “His leadership in recognizing the unique needs of this new category is an important step in making autocycle ownership safe and convenient for the American consumer.”
The Elio, which recently unveiled its new 0.9 liter, 3-cylinder engine prototype, will be manufactured in Shreveport, La., at a former General Motors facility that made vehicles such as the Hummer H3 and Chevy Colorado. The low-cost, high mileage vehicle has already been a hit with consumers. Elio Motors has taken more than 40,000 reservations for a spot in line. It is expected to go into production in the first half of 2016.
About Elio Motors
Founded by car enthusiast Paul Elio in 2008, Elio Motors Inc. represents a revolutionary approach to manufacturing an ultra-high-mileage vehicle. The three-wheeled Elio is engineered to attain a highway mileage rating of up to 84 mpg while providing the comfort of amenities such as power windows, power door lock and air conditioning, accompanied by the safety of multiple air bags and an aerodynamic, enclosed vehicle body. Elio’s first manufacturing site will be in Shreveport, La. For more information, visit www.eliomotors.com or www.facebook.com/ElioMotors.