PARIS: France's Citroen has a new vehicle it hopes will reach a market most major carmakers have not tapped: drivers as young as 14.
The French automaker's tiny 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 required.
The vehicle 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 to appeal to tech-savvy teenagers and is on sale alongside smartphones and video games consoles in a major chain of French electronics stores.
In France, to buy the most basic version will cost 6,000 euros (US$7,100). Citroen said it has so far taken 1,000 orders for the vehicle from customers in France.
"The first client who came ... was a teenager and his dad," said Olivier Garcia, head of products for French electronics retailer Fnac Darty.
He said they were looking for a safer alternative to an electric scooter or a moped, the usual 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.
(Reporting by Emilie Delwarde; Writng by Christian Lowe; Editing by Janet Lawrence)