The electric vehicle market is booming faster than ever, with car companies increasingly joining the revolution. Uniti, a new company based in Sweden, is the latest addition to the movement with the introduction of their Uniti One.
The Uniti One, unlike the recently unveiled Porsche Taycan, is not your usual ‘all-out performance’ electric vehicle. Built for three passengers, the tiny EV aims to reimagine city mobility – designed with efficiency, sustainability and affordability in mind, while maximising interior space for three adults.
You might think why specifically three adults? That is because the Uniti One has only one front seat! The driver is seated in the centre of the vehicle, similar to that of the legendary McLaren F1.
Uniti says that the unique one--two seating configuration offers ergonomic and visibility benefits for the driver, while providing easy ingress and egress for rear seat passengers.
Flanking the steering wheel are the two touchscreens, running on Android Automotive OS (just like in the upcoming Volvo XC40 EV). The Google powered infotainment system offers access to Google Maps, Waze, Spotify and other Play Store applications without the need to have a smartphone tethered to the system.
The touchscreens are also responsible for other key vehicle functionalities such as lighting, climate control and ventilation, and can be controlled through Google’s voice assistant as well.
The Uniti One does away with traditional keys, where entry into the car is done through their own secure mobile application.
On the outside, Uniti incorporated their Scandinavian touch in the design of the car – utilising clean, simple body lines and smooth contours. The car is seemingly split into two halves, with the top dominated by a sweeping electrochromatic panoramic roof that joins the front and rear windscreen to form a canopy.
The electrochromatic roof which comes as standard can be adjusted to be fully opaque or transparent to allow natural light into the cabin, and automatically darkened when parked to keep cabin temperatures low. Completing the equipment list are items such as LED daytime running light and LED taillamps, with full LED headlights as optional extras.
Uniti also equipped the One with standard safety features such as ABS, ESC, and a Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS). Customers can also specify the Uniti One with the Intel MobilEye 6 advanced driver assistance system, which includes Forward Collision (including pedestrians and cyclists) and Lane Departure Warning, as well as a speed limit indicator.
Offered in its base specification with a 12 kWh power pack, the Uniti One can cover 150 km in a single charge, and requires just 10 minutes charging for an additional 100 km of range using a 50 kW CCS charger. A larger 24 kWh battery is also available as an option, extending its range to 300 km.
With the same high-speed charger, the 24 kWh battery can recharge from 20% to 80% in just 17 minutes, while the 12 kWh does it in nine.
Weighing in at a mere 600 kg, Uniti says the ultracompact urban EV achieves a class-leading 8.0 kWh/100km efficiency. Being efficient does not mean it’s lacking in performance either, with a claimed 0 to 50 km/h in 4.1 seconds, 0 to 100 km/h in 9.9 seconds, before reaching its top speed of 120 km/h.
Uniti is a result of an open innovation research at Lund University, Sweden. After a few successful crowd-funding campaigns, the team quickly expanded to kick-start the company’s sustainable mobility business plan.
The ultracompact urban EV will be built in the United Kingdom, due to the region’s focus on “light-weighting” and innovation in advanced materials, which the company’s CEO, Lewis Horne highlighted as an ideal model for electric car production globally.
Uniti One will be available in metallic Scandium, Dark Graphite, and Warm Titanium – which are actually self-coloured materials instead of paint! The urban EV is now open for booking directly on the company’s website – skipping the industry-standard dealership network.