When you hear about a UK-built two-seater EV sportscar you’re probably thinking of Lotus or Caterham, but the Firefly Sport is a whole different animal. The model from Young Driver Motor Cars is actually a toy car, designed with the goal of introducing kids to road safety and EVs, while offering driving dynamics similar to a full-sized automobile.
The Firefly Sports measures only 2.1 m (82.7 inches) long, and its two-seater cabin can accommodate children aged between 4 and 10 years old. Thankfully, the roof is optional which means there can be unlimited amount of headroom. The company will soon unveil a special variant for adults, who won’t be able to fit in the current model.
See Also: This Is The World’s First Street Legal Power Wheels Toy Car
The exterior design of the Firefly Sport was designed by Puremedium, incorporating styling cues from modern supercars and sportscars. Indeed, the aggressive LED lights, the bulged bonnet, the muscular profile, and the aerodynamic rear deck look too sporty for something that can be driven by kids, with the thin wheels and the steering wheel that sticks out of the short windshield betraying its true nature. Inside we find a speedometer, a range indicator, a clock, a reversing camera, plus switches for operating the headlights, taillights, and indicators.
Similar to much-larger vehicles, the Firefly Sport is based on an aluminum chassis, featuring independent suspension and rack-and-pinion steering. The goal of this project was to build a vehicle for kids that handles like a car. Thus, among the people involved with the development were production engineer Steve Rawson who used to work for Aston Martin, and powertrain engineer Dr. Ian Pogson who worked for JLR and MG.
The powertrain comprises two 24-Volt electric motors, a gearbox, and dual rechargeable and recyclable 12-Volt batteries. Depending on the configuration, the top speed ranges from as low as 7 mph (11 km/h) up to 25 mph (40 km/h), making it suitable for different age groups. For safety reasons, supervising adults can remotely cut off the power within a 200 m (656 feet) range, while the vehicle is also equipped with a sensor allowing it to automatically cut off power when it detects obstacles ahead.
The company suggests that the Firefly Sport is the first all-British EV since the batteries are sourced from Bromsgrove, the electric motors are sourced from Bournemouth, the chassis is made in Coventry, and the body is built in Huddersfield.
The model will be deployed in Young Driver’s UK training sites where kids can enjoy a 15-minute test drive for £20 ($24). It will also be available for purchase for families who intend on using it on private land. Pricing will be announced during the official debut at the British Motor Show on August 18, with production starting this month. As for the much-anticipated adult-friendly variant, Young Driver Motor Cars will announce more details in the near future.