Profile of Innovation: New Thinking About Cars with Think
Think wants to change the way people think about cars. They feel that by changing our mindset, we can change the world for the better. However, they want to make this change an easy one for us. Think combines new technology and Scandinavian design to give us practical and modern vehicles - emission free and three times as energy efficient as the cars used today. Our gas price woes may subside, thanks to Think Technology's electric car, which goes 110 miles without a charge and costs less than $25,000. Think has been selling gas-free, Lilliputian city cars in Europe and will start peddling them to fuel-crunched Americans in 2009.
Think is innovative through integrating technology into new and world-class solutions. They believe that the electric vehicle is the future of urban and sustainable mobility. Their solutions are always designed with modularity and alternative solutions in mind. When technology shifts, form and function tend to follow. Innovative building techniques have revolutionized cities and architecture continuously throughout history. The Functionalist movement brought housing and homes to a new level of perception, omitting redundant space and streamlining houses to fit the patterns of everyday life. The automotive industry is no exception to this rationalist development. The first conventional cars were, in fact, motorized horse carriages. Today, the conventional gas-fuelled vehicle has found its own language. But new technology will always push forward new designs and new solutions.
Company Overview of Think Technology
Think Technology AS engages in the manufacture and sale of electric cars. The company was founded in 1973 and is based in Aurskog, Norway. Think Technology AS is a prior subsidiary of Kamkorp Microelectronics. Key executive is Jan-Olaf Willums, CEO and Managing Director. Think has established TH!NK North America in partnership with the leading clean-tech investors RockPort Capital Partners and Kleiner Perkins, Caufield and Byers. The new venture was announced at the 2008 FORTUNE Brainstorm Green Conference held in Pasadena, California, that brought chief executives from all over North America together to talk about the business opportunities of going green.
Ford became a major shareholder and invested USD 150 million in Think during its four years as an owner. When Ford decided to leave the electric vehicle sector in 2003, Think was sold out of the car manufacturing group. Though struggling to survive, Think has always retained the basic infrastructure and acquired considerable competence from its American owners.
They offer environmentally friendly vehicles, produced in their carbon Norwegian factory. During recent years, a wave of environmentalist conscience and climate change awareness has ripened the market for alternative mobility solutions. In 2006, Norwegian investors bought Think, and an experienced management team entered the scene. Both new and former staff members were added to the team, and a new strategy was outlined for the company. Further share issues during 2007 have prepared Think to go into regular production of the 5th generation TH!NK city.
Think has been developing and producing urban mobility solutions since the early 1990s. Major investments made during the Ford ownership period contributed to an important infrastructural upgrade. New investors are now grooming Think as "The Car Company of the 21st Century."
The "TH!NK city" Electric Car
From their efficient small assembly plant in Europe, they now manufacture an electrical vehicle called " a safe, fun vehicle that is easy to drive. 100% electric, it meets all the safety requirements of a large car in both the European and US market. Using 17 years of experience in electric vehicle development and production, the company, with the help of Ford, put their TH!NK city vehicle into serial production in 1999. TH!NK city is emission free, 95% recyclable and with an energy efficiency three times that of a traditional combustion engine car, making it a very environmentally-friendly car. It reaches a top speed of 65 miles per hour and can drive up to 110 miles on a single charge. Sodium or lithium batteries allow one to accommodate the car to their driving style.
The TH!NK Ox is their latest concept development and the first designated 5-seater fully electric vehicle. 100% emission free, the TH!NK Ox project includes a unique EV platform suitable for a variety of different body styles.
TH!NK Ox is a platform concept, designed for electric drive vehicles, for the European, North American and Asian market. It is the basis for a variety of vehicle styles, starting with the TH!NK Ox Crossover 5-seater. This is possible due to a space frame concept featuring the main crash structure and the batteries centrally placed in two compartments in the lower frame.
On the concept car , they have removed the roof to open your mind to what an electric vehicle can be. The TH!NK open is based on the TH!NK city and has the same technical specifications and comfort and convenience features. Think is always looking for new and clean mobility solutions. The TH!NK open is equipped with a demo Connectivity package, that enables real time navigation, web, e-mail and open interfaces.
The market for green energy is increasing, and governments across the world are improving the regulatory framework for expanding renewable energy production. In many countries, you can already buy guaranteed pure, renewable energy. Purchasing green energy truly reduces the electric vehicle emissions to zero. In 2008, Think will compensate your CO2 emissions from the electricity production in your country by purchasing CO2 quotas. There may be other incentives locally, such as tax rebates.
Electrical vehicles emit no tailpipe emissions while driving, as there is no tailpipe, and no local CO2, nitrous oxide, or particle emissions. Driving electrical vehicles will even reduce noise pollution. It is both clean and silent. Reducing overall CO2 emissions is a key global objective. Electrical engines, due to their winning energy efficiency, are significantly cleaner than any other personal transport alternative today, regardless of where the power comes from.
Sources: Think.no and BusinessWeek