The Early Death of the 3-Wheeled Car?

Elio_Motors

Starting a car company is probably one of the most difficult of all business ventures. Even the best ideas can fail due to a lack of funds or stifling government regulatory requirements.

And yet, people still try.

The people who start car companies do so because they believe they can change, or improve upon, the current state of automobile design, functionality, and performance. Starting a car company can cost hundreds of millions of dollars, though, and most who try eventually fall short of their goals because they simply run out of money.

One company, Elio Motors, wants to introduce an 84-mpg 2-seater that costs just $6,800 and is powered by a 3-cylinder gas engine. Sounds great, right?

Consider this: The Elio has only three wheels, meaning the company is trying to classify the car as a motorcycle to avoid the stricter safety and efficiency regulations that govern cars.

The government, though, has other plans, which could send Elio into the history books.

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Car Startups and Their Odds of Success

Commuter Cars Tango Parked-Side

At the beginning of football season, every team believes it will win the Super Bowl. With nothing but optimism in the air and a young season full of promise, football players have the confidence and drive to believe they’ll make it all the way. Of course, most do not.

Breaking into the National Football League is no easy task, and even the lucky few who make it have to prove themselves as worthy of being there.

The auto business is similar. The big players like General Motors, Toyota, Honda, Ford and Chrysler have made it exceptionally difficult for new players to participate in the auto manufacturing game. Tesla has finally made it to the party and started the process of proving itself as a big-league automaker.

Who will be the next rookie automaker to take things to the next level?

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