Designed by Aigars Lauzis from Latvia at the end of a bike trek all the way from London to Japan, the Z-Triton is literally the little EV that can. And does. Despite its compact size (“diminutive” would probably be a more fitting term), it’s actually comfortable and can carry everything you need for the road, and though odd-looking it’s actually quite sturdy. It has to check both these boxes, if you think about it: it’s made for long-distance camping (not glamping, mind you, so expect only the basic), and it has to be sturdy to be suitable for use both on land and water.
The Z-Triton is a trike slash boat that can comfortably sleep two adults – and one dog or small infant, if need be, but it’s going to get a bit crowded inside. With a body of plywood and fiberglass, in trike form, it’s powered by pedals with the option of using the two 250 watt electric motor hubs when going uphill. Juice comes from two battery packs and one solar panel.
The trike sits on two rear 20-inch (50-cm) wheels and one 36-inch (91-cm) wheel at the front. The rider is positioned right above the front wheel and, from what we can tell from the videos at the bottom of the page, it looks like the Z-Triton also works on torque-only. Naturally, this would drain the battery much faster, but comfort comes at a price.
In boat form, the wheels fold up. Over the raised rear wheels a couple of floaters are lowered, and there’s an electrical boat motor for propulsion. To get the boat to water, you actually have to drive the front wheel in it, and the rear end of the trike becomes the front of the boat. The cockpit includes mirrors and controls for lights, a Z-shaped wheel and even a fan for a more comfortable sail during hot days.
The Z-Triton measures 3.6 meters (11.8 feet) in length, 1.2 meters (3.9 feet) in width, and 1.55 meters (5 feet) in height. The final prototype is still a work in progress (it’s about 90 percent completed), so there are no details regarding its total weight or total payload.
Conflicting reports online note that range is 25 miles (40 km) on land and 19 miles (30 km) on water, while others say this would be top speed – in mph. Zeltini doesn’t specify anything about range or top speed on the official website, but we’re inclined to believe it’s the latter and these are top speeds. You can’t really go on “weekend getaways deep into nature, or expeditions around the world,” with this kind of range. You could run an errand or two with this range, but that’s about it.
He imagines the Z-Triton could be bought to own or for larger rental fleet. To meet as many types of requirements as possible, he plans to sell it in three versions: ready-made, as a kit and 3D designs, so the buyer can build it from scratch and customize it along the way. Pricing will be in the €7,000-€9,000 ($7,930-$10,200) range, depending on configuration.