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Even though with the sudden recall of every Solo produced .... seems they will be in partnership with others producing commercial vehicles.

From what I was able to gather, EM sent out a recall - buy back notice to all Solo owners. They claim it is because of a sudden loss of propulsion aka a software issue. But we'll assume it was something much bigger that caused this buy back to happen.

Last edited by Alan Merklin
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"From what I was able to gather, EM sent out a recall - buy back notice to all Solo owners. They claim it is because of a sudden loss of propulsion aka a software issue. But we'll assume it was something much bigger that caused this buy back to happen."

You got that right.  A software issue could have been found by a couple of competent engineers and a logic analyzer without the need to recall/buy back existing cars.  A decent Hired Software Contractor could probably write a software simulator for the car's operating system in a month or so to test their software before sending it out on the road.  That stuff is done all the time in Computerland, and an Electrameccanica car is just a rolling computer.

Just for the heck of it, I checked out the Electrameccanica web site for their senior staff, here:  (Geez - I'm getting to be like @edsnova)

What strikes me, is that there seems to be a lot of top-heavy GM/Ford executive class people in their senior management, but for a company trying to develop a new, electric vehicle, wouldn't you kind of expect a VP of Engineering??  They don't have one.   Everyone on their senior staff is either Finance, Marketing or HR based and all heavy salary people.  Where are the product designers/engineers?  Over at Tevva??

To me, this is a rather screwy company - Leading edge Engineering with no engineering leader.

I totally agree, Bob...

For a short five months back in the 1980's, I once worked for a computer company that came under a "Hostile Take Over" by a Wall Street group about a month after I started.  I was brought in to manage their New Product Hardware Division, which was really the life blood of the company and included a newly acquired Software Products Division, which had a really good Computer Aided Design product (Computervision) that Ford was using as our first customer of the product and we were developing a line of high-performance UNIX computers to run it on, tailored to the needs of the software.

Our upper management decided that they didn't want to be taken over in a hostile bid offer by stockholders, so they would make the company look as unattractive as possible by eliminating the entire new hardware product line-up as well as getting rid of all of the new product introduction people - All of my groups.  If they became unattractive enough, they were sure the take-over people would go away.

I had the lucky job of laying off 347 people, the entire New Product Division.  I was the last man standing of the Division.  After the last person was gone (there was a lot of fear and tears in their eyes) I walked into my VP's office, tossed my employee badge onto his desk, told him what he could do with it and walked out, never to return.

The Hardware side of the company ceased to exist after another six months (with still more lay-offs), but the remaining software groups continued on as "Computervision", running on other company's hardware and limping along for another decade as a shell of what they could have been.

It can be a little weird out there in the computer world, and sometimes it really doesn't make much sense.......   At least to me.

The "Wild West" world of Electric Vehicles, right now, seems a lot like back then in the mini-computer biz.  Lots of company shake-outs will be happening.

I inquired on the Electrameccania / Solo Face Book pare regarding the sudden Demise Buy Back of the Solo....

From Alan Merklin
Perhaps it would be in the best interest for ElectraMeccanica to be
upfront with their customers and disclose the actual reason(s) for the
Solo Buy Back/ Recall. The so called " sudden loss of propulsion" aka
software issue is something that could easily be written Hence, 428
dedicated Solo owners had the run pulled out from them. What say you?

This is what they had to say :

From:John Franklin
Subject:Re: Solo Buy Back
Hi Alan -
No one loved the SOLO more than the EMV team - it was inspiring, and everyone who ever drove it, myself included, adored it.
Let me try and offer some perspective here, so that perhaps you can give us a bit more credit on this topic.
First please consider that we had every incentive to keep the 428-strong production population happy and on the road.
It would have been a design proof point for the business, and a nice outcome for a loyal and terrific group of owners.
So:  the entire team, from Susan on down to all our engineers both here and in China (whose software it was) spent the entire federally-mandated time that NHTSA gives automakers to provide a fix to a safety problem, trying to create a workable solution.
No automaker gets unlimited time to solve a recall issue, btw - they get a little over a month.
With that in mind, also consider it simply wasn't as easy as you seem to believe. The other very real factor here is that any solution had to be 100% safe, reliable and certain.
Those are the very justifiable regulations around a recall notice. If you cannot absolutely guarantee someone won't get hurt? You cannot even offer a fix. That's NHTSA rules. This isn't unique to EMV - it applies to anyone, including Ford, which, for example, recalled all of its first F-150 Lightnings.
It's not anything like updating an app or security settings on a laptop, in other words.
Also:  no manufacturer wants to buy back products they've poured time and resources into - so this wasn't an idle decision for us.
Please, therefore, know:  we were 100% straight with our stakeholders. We have to be, again due to very stringent federal regulations and due to the way Susan runs the ship here.
Indeed, I'm surprised, if you've read her CEO notes, you'd think she was anything other than a totally straight shooter.
Hope this helps a bit - we understand that moving away from the vehicle was disappointing, and therefore the frustration and even confusion. But the reason for the decision was high integrity and crystal clear - without a reliable fix, neither we nor NHTSA was comfortable with the SOLOs remaining on the road. There's plenty of criticism you can level at the company - but not in this area!
Thank you!
Last edited by Theron

If they were only given a month to diagnose and resolve a safety-related software issue, I can see that they may have been unable to do so.  They've provided no information on what the issue was, so anything I say is speculation, but all automotive software has to comply with certain standards, and developing it to those standards, testing it, and rolling it out is not a small task.  I think I would give them the benefit of the doubt on this, although the complete buy-back seems to be an extreme solution.

Let's hope they are all sitting in the big factory they built in US waiting for a SW fix!  HA, gives them time to add the rumble seat.  I could see these going to Hawaii/Puerto Rico or another island with lots of sun and wind to generate electricity (and no natural fossil fuels).  Solo seating is the only drawback. Maybe instead of cutting 11" from the original VW pan for a Speedster, 25" could be grafted for an added passenger?

No one starts by developing SW from scratch - it is all reused whether thru modification or added features. HA, especially if programmed in China.

Last edited by WOLFGANG
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