Aston Martin has confirmed that its new electric Rapide E sports saloon will boast a 602 bhp power output and a “target range” of over 200 miles on a single charge.
Just 155 examples of the eco-friendly four-door will be built at the company’s new St Athan plant in southern Wales, with the first of those vehicles arriving with customers in the final quarter of next year.
Working with Williams Advanced Engineering, Aston Martin says it has been able to “overcome technical challenges” associated with packaging the electric motors and the battery system in the space available.
The battery – an 800V system rated at 65kWh – is located under the Rapide’s long bonnet, replacing the original 6-litre V12 engine, and sends its power to two electric motors. Together, these will take the car to a projected top speed of 155 mph, while Aston Martin says it is targeting a “sub-four-second” 0-60 mph time.
The British brand has stressed that these parameters will not only be achievable when the batteries are full, but throughout “the majority of the battery state charge window, as you would expect from a conventional car.”
According to a statement from the company, this means the car would be able to drive a full lap of the Nürburgring with “absolutely no derating of the battery”.
When the Rapide E’s battery does run low, Aston Martin is promising a charging rate of 185 miles of range per hour from a “typical” 400V 50kW charger. However, using an 800V outlet with a delivery of 100kWh or higher, the brand says faster charging of 310 miles of range per hour is possible.
As well as changing the car’s powertrain, Aston Martin will also modify the Rapide E’s bodywork. The exterior and underbody are “aerodynamically optimised”, while newly designed aerodynamic wheels have also been fitted.
But Aston Martin also says, with the Rapide E, it has retained and even enhanced the feel, character and delivery of the V12-powered Rapide S.
It says “careful attention” will be paid to the development of the chassis and powertrain, with the twin motors sending their power to the rear via a limited-slip differential. This, the company says, works in tandem with the revised suspension settings to ensure the “pure” handling characteristics of the Rapide S.
Speaking of the Rapide E programme, Andy Palmer, CEO of Aston Martin, said: “Environmental responsibility and sustainability is a global challenge faced by us all. As a career automotive engineer, I’m proud that the car industry is leading the way in finding long-term solutions and reducing harmful emissions. As Aston Martin’s CEO, I take particular satisfaction working with Williams Advanced Engineering and our other associated technology partners to bring Rapide E to reality.
“As our first all-electric production model, Rapide E will fast-track our knowledge and help us ensure the character and high-performance capabilities of our future EV models and enhance the unique qualities found in all Aston Martins as we know them today. Rapide E will also serve as a critical step on our path to re-launching Lagonda as the world’s first zero-emission luxury marque.”