Since stepping down from the Olympic spotlight in 2017, sprinter Usain Bolt, who is still the fastest in the 100- and 200-meter events, has turned to investing, and one of his first endeavors is U.S.-based electric mobility company Bolt Mobility.
On Thursday, Bolt unveiled a prototype for an electric minicar at a tech show in Paris and started accepting reservations. The EV is called the Bolt Nano, or B-Nano for short, and it's a follow-up to an electric scooter sharing service already available in several U.S. cities, including Atlanta, Miami, Nashville and Portland, and launched in Paris this week.
The company explained that the scooters are ideal for a single person traveling up to 2 miles. For journeys up to 15 miles, the company will position the Nano as a new option. The tiny EV can fit two, with the passenger sitting behind the driver, just like in the Renault Twizy, and four of the cars can fit in a standard parking spot.
Usain Bolt and the Bolt Nano prototype
Bolt hasn't revealed any specs but the company said the Nano will feature a swappable battery so charging can be done quickly. The first examples are due on the roads in 2020 and a reservation requires a $999 deposit. The actual price will be announced closer to the start of production.
Bolt will offer the cars through its own car sharing network, but the company is also looking at private owners purchasing the cars and adding it to the network. In return, owners will be able to share in 50 percent of the revenues that the car earns. There's been no word on any locations yet.
There's also been no word if Tata, which previously sold a minicar called the Nano, has any objections to Bolt using the Nano name.