Interview With Arcimoto CEO Mark Frohnmayer (Part One)

I had the pleasure of chatting with Arcimoto CEO Mark Frohnmayer earlier this month. This is a two-part interview. The second part will be published on CleanTechnica Pro. In this part, Mark shared a bit about Arcimoto and the goals of the company. He spoke about the Fun Utility Vehicle (FUV) platform and the family of vehicles being built on the platform.

Arcimoto’s mission is to catalyze the shift to a sustainable transportation system and it’s doing this with its Fun Utility Vehicle (FUV) platform. The vision, as Mark explained in this video, is a city that doesn’t suck anymore.

The issue is that over half of the cities are paved for cars and traffic, for vehicles that are often left parked and rusting for 95% of their lives. Cars are necessary for humans to transport themselves in, but Mark’s point is that they are heavy, dangerous, and literally shaped our cities around them. Smaller EVs that are the “right size“could not only clean our air but also help humanity reclaim its space while making cities much more livable for everyone.

Mark shared some details about the FUV as well as some new things Arcimoto has been unveiling.

“The basic idea of ​​Arcimoto is the way that we transport ourselves today is crazy. It’s killing the planet and we can do much better. The way we get around today broadly is in 4,000-pound gas-burning machines that we drive alone or with just one other person and a small amount of stuff for a relatively short distance. That’s the pattern that we live with certainly here in America and places all over the world.”

This, Mark explained, leads us to pave over almost half of our cities with asphalt and concrete to move and park cars.

“It’s a leading contributor to carbon emissions and climate change. Ultimately, the idea of ​​moving one person around with four thousand pounds of metal is just crazy. Arcimoto from the very beginning has been about how do we build a right-sized electric vehicle platform that solves the vast majority of every day trips?”

“Whether you’re going to work, school, the movies, or to the park, we’re building everyday electric rides that serve as a replacement for the automotive paradigm. And the goal is multifold. Ultimately we want sustainable transportation to be affordable for everyone and when you build something that is much lighter and has much less embodied material, is much simpler, then that’s really the pathway to drive the cost down so that anyone can afford the solution.

Arcimoto, Mark explained, is building something from an experience standpoint, and it’s a fun, joyful, nimble, and maneuverable ride that makes the task of going from point A to point B into a joy ride.

“What I think really separates us from other approaches that we’ve seen is that we have really honed in on a flexible platform. The Fun Utility Vehicle is our launch product. It’s what we’ve launched production with. FUV is our ticker on Nasdaq. It’s our consumer-focused product and our demo rental vehicle. It’s ultimately where we see the future of rideshare.”

Mark told me that the company build an entire family of products on the FUV platform, including a flatbed, which is Arcimoto’s version of a utility pickup truck. He shared that the people testing it have been loving it so far. Arcimoto also has an emergency services vehicle called the Rapid Responder that helps paramedics get to where they need to go quickly.

“We ultimately see a whole range of products all based on this common next-generation electric vehicle platform. At Arcimoto we started production in 2019 right before the pandemic hit. We’ve been growing production — I think 47 units in 2019, doubled that in 2020, and tripled in 2020 and 2021.

“We’re looking at tripling our output again this year before we start taking the really big steps of mass production which will begin around the end of this year and early next year. That’s really what the big push is in 2022 — getting to scale production.”

Arcimoto recently hosted the RAMP IT UP event on February 22 where it unveiled its new production line, outlined a path toward mass production of its FUV platform, and more — which we will get into in part two.

“It’s a big milestone for us. We are officially cutting the ribbon on the first assembly line in our new production facility.”

The second part of this interview will be published on CleanTechnica Pro.


 

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