Arcimoto: Local electric car manufacturer kicks off volume production

    Arcimoto kicks off volume production on June 9, 2018. (SBG)

    When Mark Frohnmayer looks at the row of brightly colored vehicles in the small manufacturing facility in west Eugene, he sees a vision that has come to life.

    "Looking at them all parked here's a little surreal," Frohnmayer said. "We've been working on this for a long time."

    He is the founder of Arcimoto, a company that builds electric FUVs, short for Fun Utility Vehicles.

    The electric vehicles are small two-seaters resembling a motorcycle, except they have three wheels, a windshield and a roof.

    "You just have so much visibility of what's going on around you," Frohnmayer said.

    The company was founded in 2007. For over a decade, the team has been working to get a production started on a series of FUVs that would be available to the public.

    "We've been building our very first series of vehicles that are for real customers," Frohnmayer said.

    Already, orders have been pouring in for people wanting to buy the $12,000 vehicle.

    "We have pre-orders from all over the world, from all 50 states," he said. "We are up over 2,700 pre-orders."

    Customer Rod Tharp is among one of the first people to drive away with the new series of FUVs.

    "I've been dreaming of a electric vehicle that has three wheels but also has protection from the elements and this really encompasses all of that," Tharp said.

    "Energy efficiency was very important to me," Tharp said. "I've been a climate activist for years trying to educate people about getting off of fossil fuels and transitioning to electric."

    "The market has evolved and is ready for this product and the product has evolved and is ready for the market, and that's a really gratifying feeling," Frohnmayer said.

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