Published on March 9th, 2019 | by Zachary Shahan
March 9th, 2019 by Zachary Shahan
Got a Tesla? Okay. Cool. Nice. Neat. Old news. As awesome as Tesla vehicles are, you don’t want to sit in traffic on the weekend when it’s time to relax, right? Much better to cruise along the water in a boat. However, as anyone who has jumped into a fossil-powered boat knows, the stinky pollution can ruin the whole thing. Boat regulations are super slim compared to car regulations.
The solution is clear: get rid of the pollution! It doesn’t take a test ride to know that a solar-powered electric boat would be much more enjoyable than a normal boat. Nonetheless, I went on a test ride of my friend’s new solar boat and I have to say it was even nicer than I imagined. The cool thing is that he’s now a “manufacturer” of boats in Florida and is selling them to buyers here in the US — but I’ll get back to that in a minute.
As you might presume, any friend of mine is deep into the cleantech Kool-Aid. Mateusz has a Tesla Model 3 and was reading CleanTechnica before I met him. Last year, he found out about a solar electric boat produced in Poland, which is where his roots are (before life in Chicago, Wisconsin, and now Florida). A good patriot of Poland, the US, and the world, he got the idea to import the boats and sell them to Americans. He and another cool Polish American dude lined up their ducks, imported the first boat, (gave me a ride), and are working to optimize the offering for others.
At a price of just $53,000, I have to say that I was shocked at how affordable this vehicle is. You can spend weekends on the water sipping pineapple juice, relaxing in the breeze, and reading every CleanTechnica article ever published for less than the price of a Tesla Model 3 Performance. The boat can glide for hours on the water with a relatively small battery and even has the capability to get you home on sunshine if you happen to do a disastrous job planning. (You can charge the battery from the solar panels or on the mainland, by the way.)
If you want to have a closer look at the technicalities of the boat, just head over to SolarBoatFL.com and poke around. We’ll also dive into the technology at a later date. A quick rundown of the key specs and facts (lifted from the website) is as follows:
- 100% electric catamaran
- solar powered with onshore charging capability
- elegant interior design
- seats up to 10
- virtually silent
- zero emissions and gas/diesel free
- low maintenance
- designed and built in Europe
- cruising time up to 12 hours*
- starts under $60,000
*assuming typical use with mixed throttle settings.
Being a Tesla owner, Mateusz put a nice little Build Your Own button on the company’s homepage. I encourage you to play around with that as you consider adding a solar boat next to your Tesla Model 3, Nissan LEAF, Chevy Bolt, Chevy Volt, Tesla Model Y, or BMW i3 in your driveway. (Full disclosure: I’m getting nothing special for this article. I just love the product and what Mateusz is doing here.)