Aston Martin details its first electric car, the Rapide E

Aston Martin first hinted that the company was heading down electric avenue in 2015 with the RapidE concept, and subsequently confirmed plans for a limited run all-electric Rapide last year. Few details escaped from Gaydon in Warwickshire back then, but that’s now been rectified with the release of some tasty tech specs.

Aston’s first battery electric is to be known as the Rapide E, and is being developed in close partnership with Williams Advanced Engineering. As stated in June 2017, production will be limited to just 155 vehicles, all built at a dedicated facility at the company’s St. Athan site.

The vehicle will sport two rear-mounted electric motors producing more than 610 PS (640 horses) and 950 Nm (700 lb-ft) of torque. Top speed is projected to be 155 mph (250 km/h), standstill to 60 mph (96.5 km/h) will be under the four second mark and 50 to 70 mph (60 – 112 km/h) will take 1.5 seconds – whether the batteries are at full capacity or not. On-demand battery performance “includes the ability to drive a full lap of the Nürburgring with absolutely no derating of the battery and the ability to cope with the daily demands of repeated hard acceleration and braking.”

The Rapide E’s 800 V battery system is made up of 5,600 Li-ion 18650 format cylindrical cells with a total capacity of 65 kWh and mounted where the gearbox and fuel tank of the original Rapide were located. Range per charge is expected to be over 200 miles (320 km) to WLTP standards – Aston is promising 185 miles worth of charge for every hour hooked up to a 400 V/50 kWh charger, but fast charging is also possible.

The exterior and underbody have been aero-optimized for the electric version of the 6-liter V12 Rapide, and the car has been treated to a fresh set of aerodynamic wheels wrapped in Pirelli P-Zero low rolling-resistance tires (which feature noise-canceling foam). Aston says that it will be using lightweight alloys and carbon composites to stay within strict weight targets and is also tweaking and tuning the powertrain, chassis and software to retain the feel of the original V12-powered Rapide, combining a Limited-Slip Differential with revised spring and damper rates to match the handling characteristics of the Rapide S.

First deliveries are scheduled for Q4 2019 but we’ll doubtless see much more of the Rapire E before then. Interested buyers are now being invited to express an interest, with pricing revealed on application. And Aston closes this specs reveal by saying that comments and driving experiences from owners will be taken on board to shape the development of future Aston Martin electric vehicles, confirming that we can expect more EVs from the company in years to come.

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