One of the big themes at last week’s Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas was electric vehicles, and new gadgets inside them to make them better.
The most eye-catching iteration of this was from Monarch Power, a solar panel company that stocked its booth with a bright orange Tesla (Elon Musk’s electric sports car) that had a retractable solar panel umbrella coming out of its roof. The display suggested you could drive your Tesla around in the sun forever and never need to stop at a charging station.
Unfortunately, you probably can’t buy one. It seemed to be a concept only. The Monarch Lotus Mobile unit will “supplement” electric car charging, the company says.
Monarch’s solar panels are for sale as standalone devices, however. They will sell for $US4,999. Each unit has 18 panels with 16 solar cells, which generate 1.2 kW of power.
Here’s another look:
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