This Bio-Based EV Weighs Just 683 Pounds, Certified Road-Worthy…Serously


The Lina is a pretty special, lightweight, bio-based electric city car.  And one that weighs just 683 lbs (310 kg)…yes, you read that figure right!  But it is still able to carry four people, and drive up to 50 mph (80 km/h).

Lina, the lightweight bio-based electric city car

The electric vehicle was developed at the Eindhoven University of Technology in the Netherlands, using bio composites (flax) for the entire chassis, body and interior.

Even if such big weight reduction would not be feasible in series production, even doubling the Lina’s weight would be major improvement from a fuel economy standpoint compared to conventional cars today.  So there is perhaps something to be learned from the experiment.

“TU/ecomotive utilizes a combination of bio-based composites and bio-based plastics to create their chassis. The bio-based composite is made from flax, a plant that can be grown in the any moderate climate.

The bio-composite has a strength/weight ratio similar to glass fibre, but is manufactured in a sustainable manner. A honeycomb shaped core produced from bio-plastic, known as PLA and made entirely from sugar beets, is placed in-between two flax composite sheets to provide stiffness to the strong composite.”

The Lina’s power-train utilizes two DC electric motors (8 kW total) and a lithium-ion battery pack (48 V and 1.9 kWh).

The Lina was presented at the Shell Eco-marathon 2017 at the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park in London.

Lina, the lightweight bio-based electric city car

Category: General

Tags: , , , ,

28 responses to "This Bio-Based EV Weighs Just 683 Pounds, Certified Road-Worthy…Serously"
  1. sven ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ says:

    Certified road worthy? Who certified it? And what exactly does “road worthy” mean? Is it “road worthy” the same way that a bicycle is considered road worthy?

    1. Dan says:

      The redneck trolls swarm in like flies every time there is an article about an urban vehicle.

      It’s as road worthy as your tractor. How about that? 🙂

      1. WadeTyhon says:

        Dunno if redneck on a tractor in any way describes sven…

        But now I am picturing sven as a skinny older guy in a torn baseball cap riding a Fuel Cell tractor. Most likely shrugging his shoulders and smirking.

      2. Warren says:

        You can forget any discussion of sensible vehicles on this site. Bought and paid for by the auto industry…including Tesla.

        1. Warren says:

          To be fair, they do cover stuff besides conventional cars. But probably only to get angry clicks from car nuts.

          1. SJC says:

            An aluminum chassis with composite panels would keep the weight under 1000 pounds. Use techniques perfected for making small airplanes.

    2. WisdomLost says:

      Ok, it’s “road worthy”. What about crash test results? I drive a F150, and would feel bad if I accidentally ran over one of these and didn’t even scratch my paint.

      Kidding aside, the move toward light-weight vehicles is good for economy, but we still have much larger vehicles out there. Safety has to be a major priority, considering the likelyhood that there will be a wreck at some point.

      1. SJC says:

        That could be the big truck mentality, I could crush those little cars, get out of my way.

    3. Will says:

      Still safer than me on my ‘roadworthy’ motorbike, so what does it matter?

  2. Warren says:

    Looks like we will soon have an EV, and I can stop reading car sites.

    1. says:

      Strange….i started reading after i got my first.

      1. Warren says:

        I hadn’t looked at a car mag/ad/site in twenty years, when li-ion came along in 2009. Spent way too much time at it since then. One more car left to go, before we die. It will have to be electric.

  3. Mister G says:

    WTF is this?

    1. says:

      A concept. At least this is real not a drawing on paper or pc.

    2. Warren says:

      It is a reality check. Living within limits. Ever heard of the concept?

  4. La Frennia di Mamata says:

    I think it’s a Good Concept to start with & build from there..It has numerous possibilities if all they say is true.On a Bigger scale place the Powerpack on the floor & it will have a low center of Gravity & should create stable handling and a decent ride..

  5. Devin Serpa says:

    It’s presented by Shell. Of course they sponsor hideous NEVs, Urban Cars etc. It’s like SunPower sponsoring a diesel powered motorcycle competition.

    1. Brave Lil Toaster says:

      That’s not what the Shell Eco-challenge is all about. It’s basically a college-level engineering challenge. Shell doesn’t pay anyone anything to make any of these things, but I recall that there’s prize money.

  6. SJC says:

    Making an EV ultra light weight is an obvious good start. LOTS of energy is used starting from stops, lighter weight takes less energy.

  7. Pushmi-Pullyu says:

    Seriously, a 1.9 kWh battery pack? So even as light as it is, its range is likely not much more than 10 miles, if that.

    Now, if they could make a street-legal BEV with a 100+ mile range that weighed less than 700 pounds… then I would be impressed.

    Even if the self-proclaimed description as “road worthy” is worth the paper it’s (not) printed on, this is laughably far away from a practical car. For those whose daily transportation needs can be satisfied with a vehicle with such very short range, one which almost certainly isn’t street legal, they might as well use a bicycle or a scooter.

    1. Will says:

      If it’s a high density pack they could achieve 10 miles. Maybe. I had a 54kg bicycle with a 1.5 kWh battery that managed just about 20 miles on a charge.

  8. Vexar says:

    Bio-composites in cars is not news. Leilani Munter showcased modified Tesla vehicles for the Electric GT with bio-composites back in March. What is new is the extent of bio-composites used. That, I’m impressed with. Styling, range, safety and performance? Not so much! Good job on dropping the weight.

    1. Tom says:

      Don’t forget the hemp interior pieces in the BMW i3

      1. Phaedrus says:

        Uhm, it is not hemp… it is kenaf fibre. If it’s hemp, someone would be smoking the dashboard eventually 😉

  9. peetah says:

    how does it get certification for road worthiness when the doors cant even properly close?

  10. Jason says:

    I am curious how this would last. PLA, such as used in 3D printers, will deteriorate in UV, melt at relatively low temperatures, but is bio-degradable. I wonder if this PLA is similar or if it has UV stability and higher melting point.

  11. G2 says:

    Great that someone is looking to reduce weight as well as reduce metals in car chassis.