As promised, Peapod Mobility used Earth Day to commence marketing its happy-faced variation on the Neighborhood Electric Vehicle (NEV) theme. With a top speed of 25 mph, a range of 30 miles, seats for four, a payload in excess of 900 pounds and a price tag of $12,500, the diminutive, zero-emissions Peapod has the specs to serve as an alternative to a second car for those with relatively light-duty driving duties, whether they be traditional NEV owners in retirement communities or college students looking for clean, quiet and cool campus transport. The Peapod's 72-volt battery pack can be recharged from a standard 110V wall outlet in takes six to eight hours.
A wholly-owned subsidiary of Chrysler LLC, Peapod Mobility was spawned from the same electron stock as the well-established but more commercially-oriented GEM (Global Electric Mobility) operation. Its director, Peter E. Arnell, contends that this unique take on a traditional NEV design will be able to create a new category of contemporary people mover he refers to as a "Mobi." Arnell believes its mix of style, utility and affordability will find favor with a legion of tech-savvy urban commuter types -- or at the very least, iPod owners, as the Peapod will require an iPod or iPhone to start. While inquiring minds can shop for one of these electric dream machines online at www.peapodmobility.com beginning today, deliveries won't start until the fall. Taking a tip from MINI, Arnell says Peapod Mobility will offer a fairly extensive range of personalization accessories for the Peapod -- and is also developing a two-door/two-seater dubbed the "Twinpod" and a mini-pickup called the "Utilitypod."