Elio Motors reacted quickly to Internet reports that a pending legislation from the National Highway Transportation Safety Administration (NHTSA) could further delay the production of the highly marketed and often delayed debut of its three-wheel, 84 mpg vehicle.
According to the accounts, the NHTSA has introduced a proposal to change its regulations related to three-wheeled vehicles. If enacted, Elio could face increased costs and further be delayed in its latest debut prediction of the unique-looking vehicle.
Via Elio’s spokesman, Paul Elio, the company’s founder and CEO, released the following statement:
“Elio Motors remains committed to engineering our vehicle to the industry’s highest safety standards. This particular rule from NHTSA was first published in 2013 and is not something new. NHTSA is required to post this rule at least twice a year, but no new progress has been made since 2013.”
“This rule includes vehicles with side-by-side seating. The Elio has tandem (front-to-back) seating, so this rule, if enacted would not apply.”
“Our goal as a company is to develop legislation that is in the best interest of the consumer and is appropriate for a three-wheeled vehicle. We have worked on several legislative initiatives at the state level and we support Federal legislation called ‘The Autocycle Safety Act’ that creates a new category of vehicles called ‘autocycles’ ”
“We will continue to engage the help of NHTSA in developing appropriate safety standards, which will be applied consistently to all manufacturers of autocycles.”
The Elio Motors website, www.eliomotors.com currently states nearly 49,000 would-be buyers have paid a minimum of $100 deposit to purchase an Elio at a special price and receive other perks when the car is manufactured