The ‘popemobile’ goes green

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Fisker Inc. is set to develop the first all-electric vehicle for the Holy See, Pope Francis. The all-electric papal transport will provide the first exhaust-free and emissions-free experience for those gathered for blessings by His Holiness. The spacious interior of the Fisker Ocean SUV supports a large, modern, all-glass cupola, offering accessibility and visibility for Pope Francis to greet the faithful. This specially created Fisker Ocean will be the first all-electric papal transport. (Photo: Business Wire)

BERKELEY, Cali (Reuters) — Los Angeles-based Fisker Inc plans to supply the first pure electric vehicle for Pope Francis next year, it said on Friday, with features such as a solar roof and carpets made of recycled plastic bottles from the ocean.

Fisker will covert its all-electric Ocean sport utility vehicle for use by the pope, providing a retractable glass cupola and sustainable interior materials, such as the carpets.

Fisker co-founders, Henrik Fisker and Dr. Geeta Gupta-Fisker, during a private audience with Pope Francis on Thursday, presented a vision for the design of an all-electric papal transport. (Photo: Business Wire)

Co-founders Henrik Fisker, formerly a designer for British luxury carmaker Aston Martin, and Dr. Geeta Gupta-Fisker met the head of the Roman Catholic Church in Vatican City, the company said.

“I got inspired reading that Pope Francis is very considerate about the environment and the impact of climate change for future generations,” said Fisker.

Production of the Ocean electric SUV is planned to start in November next year, through contract manufacturer Magna International Inc in Europe.

The firm did not reveal the cost of the modified vehicle intended for the pope, but the Fisker Ocean starts at $37,499 in the United States, and 32,000 euros ($39,152) in Germany.

Last year, Francis received a hydrogen-powered Toyota Mirai sedan specially designed to ensure his mobility.

Reporting by Hyunjoo Jin; Editing by Clarence Fernandez

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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