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Fledgling car maker reveals plug-in hybrid

Date: 27 October 2009

New-start UK car maker Axon Automotive has taken the wraps off a yet-to-be-named plug-in hybrid two-seat car, which it hopes to sell to the fleet market.

The Axon hybrid is powered by a 500cc petrol engine and electric motor and has a claimed CO2 output of 50g/km including a calculation for the emissions produced generating the electricity. In a change from the 'usual' set-up to a plug-in hybrid, the Axon will be available with differing battery sizes depending on a customer's needs, according to managing director Steve Cousins. He added that although there is yet to be an official fuel consumption figure, in petrol-only form the car is capable of 100mpg.

Cousins plans to sell 200 Axon hybrids a year when the car reaches full production in 2012, although first cars will go on sale in 2011. He also expects the majority of sales to go to the business car arena.

"Sales in the first two years will be business sales to local authorities and utility firms," said Cousins, who promised the car would be "competitively priced" against rival vehicles from more established and larger car makers.

Commenting on the cars safety, Cousins said: "We will put the car through EuroNCAP and would expect a four-star rating."

Cousins attributed the good safety rating to the car's carbon fibre construction.

However, the car is not expected to gain five stars as it will not be fitted with anti-skid control - a requirement for the maximum score.

Axon Automotive claims to be the only UK owned car company making a plug-in hybrid EV and is funded by the UK Technology Strategy Board and private investment.