Los Angeles-based Canoo is one of the first companies to specialize in subscription-only electric vehicles (EV). The first model, called canoo, was designed by Richard Kim, the man behind the BMW i3 and i8 designs. The vehicles boast a proprietary “skateboard” architecture that directly houses the batteries and electric drivetrain. In other words, all of Canoo’s vehicles will share the same chassis, but with different cabins.
To maximize interior space, Canoo created a composite transverse “leaf spring” suspension that creates a completely flat skateboard. This self-contained skateboard can drive on its own with any cabin atop and is set up in a way to support a dual, front or rear motor configuration. Safety is paramount, and that’s why the team integrated advanced driver-assistance systems (ADAS) and Driver Monitoring to enable the car to better protect the driver from roadside distractions, utilizing seven cameras, five radars, and 12 ultrasonic sensors.
What do all these sensors mean? Put simply, they’re competitive with other Level 2+ systems, and its central domain controller enables the vehicle to be future facing, meaning driver assistance features will only improve as the technology evolves. Each vehicle is equipped with an 80 kWh battery that generates 304 hp and 313 lb-ft of torque, good for a top speed of 125 mph. It can be charged in just 28 minutes using DC fast charging and has a 250 mil range.
Beginning in early 2019, the company started testing various parts of the vehicle technology for engineering and production validation. Now, they’re entering a beta testing period where all functionalities and components are tested together in a fleet of custom-built canoo validation vehicles. Want to see one yourself before they officially hit the roads inn 2021? Stop by the The Abbot Kinney Festival in Venice, California, on September 29 or The Car Classic at the ArtCenter College of Design in Pasadena, California on October 20.