- Sono Motors and Valmet Automotive Announce the Signing of a Term Sheet for the Manufacturing of the Sion Solar Electric Vehicle (SEV) at Valmet Automotive’s Uusikaupunki, Finland, Production Line.
- Within Seven Years, the Contract Manufacturer, who has extensive experience manufacturing for premium OEMs, will provide production capacity for 257,000 vehicles.
- Production is scheduled to begin in the second half of 2023.
- The Funding Requirements Increase.
- The Sion Will Be Priced at €25,126 Net in the Future Due to Increased Manufacturing Costs. The New Price Will Become Effective After 18,500 Reservations. All existing reservations will remain at their previous rates.
Valmet Automotive is one of the most sustainable contract manufacturers in the world, having been certified climate neutral as of 1 January 2022.
- Sono Motors’ Headquarters in Munich Continues to Serve as the Exclusive Development Center for Sono Solar Technology
Sono Motors and Valmet Automotive announced today the signing of a binding term sheet outlining all significant terms of the collaboration and production of the Sion solar electric vehicle (SEV). The Sion will be manufactured by the Finnish contract manufacturer at its plant in Uusikaupunki. Over a seven-year period, Valmet Automotive will have the capacity to produce more than 257,000 vehicles.
“The cooperation marks another milestone towards delivering the Sion to our growing Community. We are convinced that collaborating with such a reliable and experienced partner is an excellent match for bringing the Sion to the streets, while securing high quality standards. We value Valmet Automotive’s experience in manufacturing premium automobiles and their proven track record in electro mobility, together we are well positioned to keep our promise and deliver a climate-neutral Sion to our customers.” says Laurin Hahn, CEO and co-founder of Sono Motors.
“The cooperation with Sono Motors is a perfect fit with Valmet Automotive’s strategy, capabilities, and sustainable approach in all operations. We have been pioneers in electric vehicle manufacturing since 2009, and the innovative solar electric Sion will take us to the next level as the first high-volume, fully electric vehicle to be produced in the Uusikaupunki plant. In the rapidly changing automotive industry, Sono Motors is a leading exponent. We are looking forward to supporting Sono Motors in their electromobility targets,” says Olaf Bongwald, CEO, Valmet Automotive.
The Joint Venture Aims to Produce 43,000 Vehicles Per Year
Valmet Automotive began manufacturing automobiles in 1968 through a joint venture with Saab. Since then, the company has produced over 1.7 million vehicles as a contract manufacturer for some of the world’s largest automobile manufacturers. General price increases, the switch to Valmet Automotive, and the development of new production lines will result in increased funding requirements of at least €275 million by the start of production (SOP) in the second half of 2023 (including expected cash inflow from advance payments from reservations). Valmet Automotive’s Uusikaupunki facilities are capable of producing a low four-digit volume in 2023, followed by a ramp-up period. Following this period, which is expected to last a few months, the partners intend to produce approximately 43,000 Sion per year using only renewable energy. Sono Motors currently anticipates that all greenhouse gas emissions associated with production that cannot be avoided along its supply chain or during the vehicle’s manufacturing process will be fully offset through appropriate measures. Valmet Automotive is one of the most sustainable contract manufacturers in the world, with a goal of being carbon neutral by the year 2022.
Prices Adjusted for New Customers as a Result of Market Development
The Sion had over 17,000 direct consumer reservations as of 31 March 2022, with an average down payment of €2,390 net. The car is currently priced at €23,950 net, but the company intends to increase the estimated net price before taxes and subsidies to €25,126 (€29,900 including German VAT) once the reservation total reaches 18,500. Thus, Sono Motors is responding to the recent increase in manufacturing costs as a result of increased prices for production facilities and supplier components, as well as raw materials, energy, and logistics, while maintaining the current promised net reservation prices. “By adjusting our pricing to the current economic environment, we can reflect our increased costs while still offering our customers a completely sustainable SEV at an attractive price.” Sono Motors’ Chief Operating Officer, Thomas Hausch, explains.
Sono Motors is currently assembling a fleet of series-validation vehicles in Germany, closer to the company’s headquarters, in order to kick-start the Sion’s testing program. This family-friendly vehicle’s outer shell will be made up of 456 seamlessly integrated solar half-cells, enabling self-sufficiency on short journeys. Solar energy generated by the solar cells will extend the Sion’s 54 kWh LFP battery’s estimated 305 km range by an average of 112 km (up to 245 km) per week. Commuters in urban areas will charge their Sion up to four times faster than they would with a conventional electric car of the same vehicle class and battery size. Bidirectional charging complements the car’s solar integration and is intended to transform the Sion into a mobile power plant capable of powering electronic devices, the home, or other electric vehicles with a maximum output of 11 kW.