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Pilotcar EV put the finishing touches this week on its autonomous vehicle that will be on display April 18 at the Edison Awards in Fort Myers. 

Pilotcar, headquartered at 4520 Tamiami Trail N. in Naples since 2022, will be participating in the Edison Awards for the first time, featuring the autonomous version of its Pilotcar. 

The Edison Awards, which celebrate technology, innovation and entrepreneurs, will have events April 17 in Fort Myers, culminating with the awards banquet April 18 at Caloosa Sound Convention Center downtown. 

Pilotcar EV autonomous car“This is something unique,” said Mete Timur, co-founder of Pilotcar. His wife, Aysegul Timur, is the president of Florida Gulf Coast University. “This is something different. I think it deserves to be at the Edison Awards. When you see the videos, and when you see our cars, you’ll understand better why I’m saying that.” 

Regular Pilotcars can be bought at dealerships across Southwest Florida, including B&W Golf Cars at 5467 Yahl St. in North Naples. Pilotcars start at under $20,000, a price point higher than other brands, said Reid Parker, vice president of B&W Golf Cars, but it’s a price point well worth it. 

Parker said his company, in business since 1974, was looking for an option like Pilotcar. 

“Pilotcar utilizes less than 5% of its parts from China, that puts them far above anybody else,” Parker said. “As a long-established, family-owned business, we were looking for something like this. Our whole thing is value proposition. We treat these things like investments, rather than disposable toys. Pilotcar certainly fits the bill for that. Yeah, they’re a little pricier than some of the [others] out there, but they’re built to last forever.” 

About 60% of Pilotcars are manufactured in the south Fort Myers factory. 

They are made with a combination of parts from Turkey, Germany and the U.S. 

Mete Timur with a Pilotcar autonomous carThe regular cars can be street legal if they are registered. Because they are capped at 25 mph, they can only travel on roads with speed limits up to 35 mph. 

The autonomous versions are capped at 10 mph for safety reasons. They are created with a combination of technology from three companies. 

Pilotcar makes the cars. Imecar, based in Turkey, makes the lithium batteries. 

Carteav, based in Israel, creates the software that makes the car autonomous. 

For now, the self-driving Pilotcars can only be used on private property, said Eli Doron, chief technology officer for Carteav. 

We map the area,” Doron said. “It only works in geofenced areas. We know exactly all the places. We know exactly where the vehicle is. And we plan a route. 

“It could be a resort. It could be a retirement community, a gated community, an industrial complex, the airports. Anything that can be a private area.” 

Epperson, a gated community in Wesley Chapel, has an autonomous Pilotcar. By participating in the Edison Awards, Doron said he hoped to expand his company’s reach. 

“We think the Edison Awards will be a way for us to be known and penetrate the market,” Doron said. 

Copyright 2024 Gulfshore Life Media, LLC All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed without prior written consent.

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