Creating a more equitable world
two wheels at a time
At Lit Motors, our mission is to make the more equitable, more sustainable vehicle of the future. We want to light a fire under the status quo of transportation, bringing together the speed and freedom of two wheels and the safety and accessibility of four for the benefit of drivers everywhere. Our primary motivation isn't fame or profit—it's change.
Long commutes are more than an inconvenience. The hours lost sitting in traffic or waiting on inefficient public transportation are hours that are subtracted directly from the time we have to spend on the things that matter to us.
Unfortunately, this lost time disproportionately harms the poor and disadvantaged. Affordable housing is most often further from business centers, increasing the length and cost of transit for those who need it. Longer commutes, in turn, have been shown to decrease the likelihood of escaping poverty. Which makes sense, when your ability to access new jobs or keep the one you have can be severely limited by your transit options.
Our vision is a vehicle that breaks through this socioeconomic barrier. Agile to cut out time stuck in traffic, compact to fit into any daily commute, and efficient to keep the cost per mile affordable for all.
The majority of Americans make their daily commutes alone, generally in vehicles built large enough to carry four or more. With space used so inefficiently by these millions of mostly-empty vehicles, traffic congestion and the increased pollution that comes with it are virtually inevitable. All this driving accounts for hundreds of millions of gallons of gasoline burned in the US every day, with 92% being used by everyday light-duty vehicles. Even the need to park all of these vehicles causes often overlooked damage, with the ever-growing expanses of parking lots and roads damaging watersheds and creating heat islands in our communities.
Creating more a more sustainable solution to these problems is central to everything we do. By replacing the standard daily commuter vehicles with something built to fit the number of people most often riding in it, we can dramatically reduce congestion and the need for endless parking lots. As a lightweight, high-efficiency electric vehicle, we can also slash the reliance on fossil fuels while only needing to use batteries 1/8th the size of full-sized electric cars. All this without compromising on the safety and convenience drivers expect from their vehicles.
The reasons why large personal vehicles, even existing EVs, can be so unsustainable are sometimes hard to intuit, but the physics are actually fairly simple
F=ma — Moving a vehicle requires Force to be applied. The more mass the vehicle has and/or the more acceleration needed, the more force needs to be applied to achieve that movement.
W=Fs — Along those lines, if a Force moves an object like a vehicle, it's doing Work. The amount of work required increases the greater the force used and the more the vehicle is displaced (s).
W = KE(final)−KE(initial)
KE = (1/2) m*v^2 — Based on the work-energy principle, the change in the Kinetic Energy of a vehicle is equal to the amount of work being done on it. That energy is, in turn, determined by the product of the mass of the vehicle and its velocity.
So what is the point of all of this? The idea that "large, heavy vehicles take more energy to move" is probably fairly obvious, especially when using something that is fundamentally inefficient like internal combustion. What can be easier to miss, however, is how EVs are just as suceptible to this same physics pitfall, most notably with their batteries. Not only are the vehicles themselves still being built overly large and heavy for their average use, but the batteries themselves are incredibly massive. These together make for a vehicle that requires massive amounts of power to drive, and increasingly large batteries that we still are not equipped to recycle properly at scale.