For many years, Aston Martin has been developing an electric powertrain for its largest car, the Rapide. Now, the “Rapide E” has just been unveiled to the world at the Shanghai Auto Show, what better place to show off a large, all-electric saloon.
Developed in partnership with Williams Advanced Engineering, the 65kWh battery pack sits exactly where the 6.0 litre V12 does in the traditional Rapide. This may sound odd as it keeps weight high whereas competitors prefer to keep it low by placing the batteries on the floor.
It manages to send 601hp and 950 Nm of torque to the motors which only power the rear wheels as opposed to most EVs which are AWD. This gives the Rapide E a quoted 0-60mph time of just under 4 seconds and a top speed of 155mph. It could be the ultimate overtaking weapon though as Aston Martin claims a 50-70mph time of 1.5 seconds.
It has a range of over 200 miles and using a fast charger, it will fill its batteries in less than an hour. Using a standard charger however, it will take a bit longer with a reported charging rate of 185 miles an hour.
The Rapide E uses everything Aston Martin has learnt since the Rapide was unveiled in 2010. In fact, it borrows chassis elements from the AMR version of the car and incorporates GT, Sport and Sport + modes. Along with a limited slip differential, the Rapide E should handle just as well as its combustion powered siblings.
Thanks to a larger rear diffuser, front splitter and forged aluminium wheels, the Rapide E remains differentiable from other Rapide models.
Built in the newly finished St Athan production facility, the Rapide E will only be made in 155 examples so if it takes your fancy, you’d better get on the phone the Aston Martin.
Although Aston Martin has a record of making limited edition models, it seems odd that this “E” version of the Rapide would be. Could it be to make it more desirable as the EV side may not appeal to car enthusiasts? Let me know what you think in the comments.