The small German car manufacturer Artega wanted to present its Karolino electric car at the IAA (September 12-22 in Frankfurt am Main). The Munich Higher Regional Court has now prohibited this. According to Artega managing director Klaus Dieter Frers, however, the court order only refers to the fact that the Karolino must not look like the pre-production Microlino. According to Frers, that was never the intention. 'Our electric city vehicle will be on display at our IAA stand B08 in Hall 5!' Freres explained to a uto motor und sport . The background is a dispute between the Microlino inventor Micro Mobility AG from Switzerland and Artega. After all, Artega bought the Italian company that was supposed to build the Microlino to order - and then the Germans presented the Karolino on their own version of the electric vehicle.
The Swiss company Micro Mobility AG, which is celebrating great success with small scooters, had big plans with the electric mini-car called Microlino . And it still has it, even if the start of production planned for 2019 is postponed indefinitely.
The reason is the sale of the Italian contract manufacturer TMI, where the Microlino was to be manufactured, to the German company Artega. There they wanted to build a new brand with the GT sports car in 2012, but after 153 cars were built, it was over.
Karolino and Microlino are twins
Artega wants to bring its own small electric car called Karolino onto the road this year, which at least incorporates the technical concept with the Microlino Splits. In the first pictures, the Karolino pre-production vehicles looked very similar to the Microlino. According to Artega, the production vehicle should differ significantly from the Microlino. The company from Delbrück wants to start delivering the Karolino in October. Artega calls this a further developed sister model of the Microlino electric vehicle. The company says the pilot production of the city car with the rounded retro design of the 1950s has 'started successfully in the new Artega plant'. In November 2018, the Microlino development project and some pre-series vehicles were taken over from the Italian Tazzari Group and developed further to readiness for series production.
The Artega Karolino is set to celebrate its world premiere at the IAA in September 2019. According to its own statements, Artega intends to open regional distribution centers in Germany in which potential customers can test drive the Karolino.
Significantly revised Karolino
Artega wants the light vehicle itself to have 'improved in more than 150 technical points'. Chassis and chassis have been redesigned. The sister company Paragon supplies a voice assistant, a smartphone integration and a sound system. In addition, new batteries for the electric drive and a new on-board network should also allow fast charging. Initially, the Karolino should be charged to 80 percent in two hours, later in an hour.
While the Karolino has been significantly revised compared to the Microlino, Artega also emphasizes that it continues to be “the exclusive manufacturer of the Microlino in Europe ”will remain. Do you see it that way in Switzerland? With a social media campaign, Mico Mobility AG apologized to its interested parties and announced that the start of the Microlino is being postponed.
Delay in the Microlino
is allegedly one disagrees with Klaus Frers and Artega about the quality of the production car. We only found out about the takeover of the producer TMI by Artega afterwards. 'We had no other option than to try to present this sale positively in the media,' reports Micro Mobility.
The planned option for pre-orderers to make down payments from May 2019 for the Microlino, which is planned to cost 12,000 euros to be able to afford is postponed. This is a sign that the market launch is not just delayed by a few weeks or months. But this month, Micro Mobility wants to activate a configurator to keep potential buyers happy.
“Setbacks are part of entrepreneurship,” they explain. “We are working hard to get the Mircolino to theArtega managing director Frers emphasizes, however, despite the current discrepancies: “Besides, there are constructive negotiations between the parties!”