Car Tips

How the Wheego compares to other electric cars

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

We aren't quite inundated with electric cars yet, but they're steadily coming. The latest is the cute little two-seater called Wheego.

The Wheego LiFe may look like a Smart car, but it's not. The body shell is made in China, then the car is assembled in the Inland Empire. All the electrical parts are built in Ontario and all the parts put in it are built in America, an official said.

It's equipped like most modern cars and freeway legal. Advertised range is about 100 miles and it can charge on public high-voltage chargers or from household power.

The Wheego LiFe seems to be a hodgepodge of bits and pieces from other cars, rather than a cohesive design. Still, it's easy to park, turns on a dime and doesn't use any gasoline or produce emissions.

The first thing you might notice about the Wheego is that it's small, especially when someone rather tall is standing near it. Surprisingly, someone it can accommodate a person that's 6-foot-6 with headroom to spare.

Interior space isn't an issue for the Wheego, but the price could be. It isn't cheap. Suggested retail price for the LiFe is about $33,000 plus delivery. Air conditioning is an extra $2,000. A federal tax credit drops the price to just over $26,000.

Compared to the Nissan Leaf, which is larger and includes air conditioning for a cost of $28,550, the Wheego LiFe is only a bit less money after the tax credit is factored in.

Ford will soon have an electric version of the Focus. No price has been announced yet, but it will likely be competitive.

The electric price leader will be the upcoming Mitsubishi i, with an after-tax-credit price of $21,340.

Other subsidies vary. California is currently offering a $25,000 rebate on electric vehicles.

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auto news, auto industry, environment, car tips, dave kunz
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