Venturi, the Monegasque company that makes the Eclectic, makes no bones about its philosophy behind building the car. Geopolitical tensions and environmental concerns drive the need to build more efficient automobiles, according to the company. A statement on the Venturi Web site describing the Eclectic's purpose explains further:
"Soaring gas prices, economic crises, wars, omnipresent pollution, irreversible changes in the climate… Our world is going through a period when the stakes in terms of energy form the very basis for worldwide chaos. While admitting that no solution for energy production can be perfect, we must become fully aware of the imperative need to limit our own personal consumption of energy. Eclectic, the first solar and electric autonomous car in the history of the automobile, opens up a new era in the field of mobility: reserved for daily driving in urban areas" [source: Venturi].
As for the car's appearance, the Eclectic is open, airy and somewhat retro, with its square-like contours and doorless design. The doors are optional, but certain cues, like the Eclectic's solar panel roof and three-seat passenger area, hint toward the car's futuristic bent.
The driver and passengers will find themselves adjusting to a seating configuration unique to current standard production vehicles: The driver sits front and center in the Eclectic's cabin, while the two passengers sit side-by-side in the rear.
We'll take a look at the technical aspects of the Venturi Eclectic on the next page.