Not only Porsche and McLaren are working on some kind of electrification for their supercars. Aston Martin is also developing something new and very limited: the Rapid E, a special edition with only 155 units scheduled to be produced.
Working closely with Williams Advanced Engineering (WAE) as its development partner, Aston Martin has utilised the hugely successful leader in Electric Vehicle (EV) technology to kickstart a new era for Aston Martin’s powertrain technology and overcome the technical challenges associated with packaging the battery system and motors within the space available.
Throughout the development process, the engineering team have focused on achieving effective cooling of the batteries and motor to ensure consistent performance.
Rapide E will be powered by an 800V battery electrical architecture with 65 kWh installed capacity using over 5600 lithium ion 18650 format cylindrical cells. These are mounted in a bespoke battery pack where the original 6.0-litre V12, its gearbox and fuel tank were located. This battery system powers two rear mounted electric motors producing a combined target output of just over 610PS and 950 Nm of torque.
Rapide E’s range target is over 200 miles under the Worldwide Harmonised Light Vehicle Test Procedure (WLTP), while the model is capable of charging at a rate of 185 miles of range per hour using a typical 400V 50kW charger.
The car’s exterior and underbody has also been aerodynamically optimised and complemented with newly-designed aerodynamic wheels.
Projected top speed for the Rapide E is 155mph, with a sub-4.0sec 0-60mph time and a 50-70mph time of just 1.5sec. This 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 rear-wheel drive Rapide E’s twin electric motors will drive through a Limited-Slip Differential, which combined with revised spring and damper rates ensures the pure handling characteristics for which the petrol-powered Rapide S is already renowned.