Alternative Energy

Alternative Energy

Alternative energy news, and information about renewable energy technologies.

Mar 12

Meet the ELF: A Pedal-Powered, Solar-Electric Hybrid

Posted in Pedal Power | Solar Power | Transportation

Described as the “most efficient vehicle on the planet”, The ELF is a solar and pedal-powered hybrid tricycle hand-built in the United States by Organic Transit. It is available in one, two and three seater models, and according to their website it gets the equivalent of 1800 miles per gallon! It is legally considered a bicycle, so it can be used on bike paths, parks and sidewalks and requires no gas, license, registration or insurance.

The solar-charged electric motor does not power the vehicle, but rather “assists” your pedalling with a boost of power whenever you need it. The ELF can travel at speeds over 25 mph, and the motor is geared low enough to handle climbing hills with ease. The battery has a range of 16 miles with no pedalling, and 30 miles with pedalling. It takes about 2-3 hours to charge using a normal standard wall outlet. Obviously solar charging times depend on the availability of sunlight. In direct sunlight it can be completely recharged in about 8 hours.

ELF Organic Transit
The standard ELF can handle a payload of 350 lbs, including rider. The trike itself weighs between 160-180 lbs depending on accessories. The trikes start at $5495 and a variety of models and accessories are also available. You can even build your own! Obviously at that price, they aren’t for everyone, but for some this could be a very smart transportation solution for those looking to reduce transportation costs in an Eco-friendly way.

Watch the video:

What do you think? Leave your comments below…

  • Their Grandma

    It’s 16 miles to my favorite supermarket. I weigh 160 pounds. I WANT ONE!!

  • leel6391

    This should turn in to an engine powered vehicle to make it more demanding.

    • Donna

      It HAS an electric motor!

  • Oemissions

    anyone who gets this for everyday transit instead of using a regular car should get a tax break

  • Sašo Luznar

    Too expensive, I will stick with my 100$ bicycle 🙂

  • t4


  • Roopie

    I think that price moves it into its own class. It can’t compete with anything that accomplishes the same goals (eg, Vespa, power assisted bike). They’ll need to work on that.

    • Donna

      Sure it does. You don’t have shelter with those.

  • Aharon Varady

    Contrary to the article, bicycles are usually not legal on sidewalks, just sayin’.

    • Gregory Mead

      That depends on where you live. Long ago, in Philadelphia, you couldn’t ride on sidewalks (which I actually agree with, btw), but in other places that I’ve lived (rural and suburban areas, New Orleans, San Diego, Jacksonville, FL), it’s completely legal.

  • Beate7

    Looks great! Small spelling error: The trike itself [ways] between 160-180 lbs = [weighs].

    • AENews

      Oops… corrected. Thank you sir!


    I LOVE mine!

  • Amy

    Being 5’2″, I hope it would be adjust enough for less than average heights. But I do want one.

  • Sugano Svetlana

    Mr. Cotter ….This is a great contribution to society.

  • James M. Holtzman

    awesome is all I have to say…

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