Myers Motors NmG (formerly known as the "Sparrow")
By: +David Herron; Date: 2021-01-03T23:53:32.225Z
In 1998 or so Corbin, the makers of fine motorcycle seats, got into the electric car business. One of the Corbin founders had a fondness for electric vehicles, having built a few electric motorcycles and setting some kind of speed record with an electric motorcycle.
The Sparrow was a three-wheeled oddball looking car. It registered as a motorcycle (3 wheels) but since it was enclosed you weren't required to wear a helmet, nor were you required to have a motorcycle license. It went highway speeds and was perfect for the solo driver in the typical commute. But it didn't sell very well, had a few design problems, and the company went out of business. Shutting down wasn't because of problems with the car, but unrelated business problems.
Now, the car is available again, much improved as well, from Myers Motors. Myers bought the car design and has been working to get it back into production.
I've never gotten to drive one of these cars, but have looked very closely at several of the Sparrows made by Corbin. The Myers Motors version is much improved.
The car is three wheeled, two in front, one in the rear. The rear is the drive wheel. The electrical system runs at 156 volts (13 batteries). The batteries are sealed lead-acid, with most of them low to the ground. The car body is akin to a jelly bean, with no sharp edges anywhere. It seats a single person and has a small storage compartment in the rear. The unique car shape is sure to stand out anywhere, so owners of this car should expect more than their usual share of EV questions.
It's always struck me that the Sparrow (er... NmG) is the perfect "station car". The "station car" concept is for a service company to carry a stock of rentable cars in the parking lots of train stations. When someone takes a train somewhere, they need local transportation at their destination (usually), and a short range car would be perfect. Here's where an EV can shine, because the range isn't a limitation, and that it's electric makes the rental and "refueling" much more straightforward. One use case for station cars is the suburbanite who takes the train to work every day. They can rent on a long term basis a station car from their local train station, using the rented station car to drive between their home and the station.
For availability check the Myers Motors web site. They claim to be shipping now.