Sir Clive Sinclair, the inventor and boffin that brought us home computing, rechargeable electric cars and calculators that were allowed in maths exams due their fiendishly complicated interface, is to try again with the rechargeable car. Sinclair is going with the innovative name of C6.
Sinclair has learned from the previous version of his electric vehicle, which turned out to be a glorified bicycle, only harder to peddle. The new vehicle will be solar powered.
"This is the way forward," said Sinclair. "We have also solved the problem of not being able to get over a speed bump, by completely removing the chassis."
Running a solar powered vehicle requires a series of complicated calculations that are performed by the on-board computer.
"We're using our old stock of ZX81s," said Sinclair. "It keeps the costs down."
This does mean that the computerised controls on the C6 have very difficult to press buttons, but they are very robust, once the RAM Pack has been gaffa taped into place.
The pedals have gone from the C6 replaced by solar panels, which can charge the on-board battery even on a cloudy day.
"After we'd done the maths," said Sinclair, "we discovered that we needed eighty-five square feet of solar panels to run the car. These are pulled along in a trailer behind the C6."
This leads to the major criticism of Sinclair's latest invention: it is difficult to corner whilst towing a tennis court sized solar panel array. It also makes the C6 a little more expensive than other electric vehicles, with the initial models retailing at a few pence under two hundred and fifty thousand pounds.
"We're hoping people can see past the minor problems," said Sinclair, "and see instead that once again, I've invented a new version of the future."
Vauxhall's chairperson, Mercedes Ford, believes Sinclair is still as mad as ever. "He's not invented a new version of the future, he's invented a new version of furniture."