France’s Citroen has a new vehicle it hopes will reach a market most significant automakers have not tapped – drivers as young as 14.
The French automaker’s small two-seater Citroen Ami vehicle is powered by a modest 6-kilowatt electric motor, so under French legislation, it can be driven by someone as young as 14 and no driving licence is needed for that.
The car has a 45 km (27 miles) per hour top speed, its bodywork is plastic and it has a no-frills interior.
But it has features likely attractive for tech-savvy teenagers and is on sale alongside smartphones and video game consoles in a major chain of French electronics stores.
In France, to purchase the most basic version will cost 6,000 euros ($7,100). Citroen said it has so far taken 1,000 orders for the car from customers in France.
“The first client who came … was a teenager and his dad,” said Olivier Garcia, head of products for local electronics retailer Fnac Darty.
Garcia said they were looking for a safer alternative to an electric scooter or a moped, the common modes of transport young French people use to zip around cities.
“So that’s a share of our customers that is not negligible,” said Garcia.