While zero-emission vehicles were burdened with bizarre-shaped econoboxes confides years ago, some electric car boosters quickly took note of impressive performance traits in the advanced power train. When the General Motors EV-1 was evaluated of leasing consumers in the late 1990s, acceleration was discovered as quite peppy. When the United States automakers and government briefly withdrew their support of the environmental advantages of electric vehicles in the early 2000s, some electric car hopefuls began to turn their eyes on the unintended but positive performance potential. With Tesla Motors marketing their radical all-electric Roadster, the independent automaker was one of several case studies to convince large auto corporations to take a new look at electric powerplants.
Not a stranger to innovation, German sports car builder Porsche adopted technology Ferdinand Porsche originally applied to the car known as the economy-oriented Volkswagen Beetle to spawn what would be continuing admiration for high-speed motoring. As of late, Porsche has also been actively pursuing electric propulsion technology. Producing the Porsche Cayenne Hybrid and later the Panamera Hybrid, some of the most exciting news has been based around the 911 GT3 R Hybrid race car as well as the eventual production of the plug-in hybrid 918. At the Michelin Challenge Bibendum in Berlin, Germany, native sports car builder Porsche showed-off the Boxster E for what continues to be an ambitious development for reduced emissions powertrains.
Appearing as alluring as a typical Porsche Boxster roadster, the major changes occur under the sports car’s skin. The first prototype using one of the sport car builder’s smaller vehicles, the Porsche Boxster E incorporates an all-electric powertrain similar to technology already proposed through earlier concepts. Foregoing the fuel tank and the gasoline-burning engines, the Boxster E’s unique equipment includes a 750-pound, 440-cell lithium-ion battery as well as heat exchangers to regulate the water-cooled electric powerplant. Regenerative braking technology has merged with the Porsche Ceramic Composite Brakes (PCCB) system providing ideal lightweight properties as well as performance. The Porsche Boxster E is said to take 9 hours to fully recharge with the option of quick charging for faster readiness.
In efforts to gain a full profile for the effectiveness of electric vehicle technology, there will be a rear-wheel drive and all-wheel drive versions of the Porsche Boxster E prepared. With a single electric motor powering a single axle, the all-wheel drive Boxster E will feature two electric motors combining for 160 kilowatts of power. A single 90-kilowatt electric propulsion unit will be mounted on the rear-wheel Boxster E model. Translated into the performance measurement staple for gasoline engines, the Porsche Boxster E vehicles will produce between 120 to 241 horsepower.
Through the horsepower output isn’t as robust as the gasoline engines; the Porsche Boxster E does inherit an admirable driving quality through electric motoring. Compensating for lower horsepower, the equivalent of over 398 foot-pounds of torque propels the Boxster E roadster practically on an instant. The all-wheel drive version of the Porsche Boxster E lights up the pavement with a 0 to 60 mile per hour run in only 5.5 seconds. Despite a deficient of over 480 pounds, the Boxster E’s acceleration is a tick faster than the standard Boxster. Performing very Porsche-like on the bottom-end, Boxster E is limited for top-end performance. Topping out at 93 miles per hour with the rear-wheel drive and 124 miles per hour for the all-wheel drive version, the bounds of electric motoring could be an obstacle keeping the Porsche Boxster E from regular production.
Losing the hypnotic sound of a fast-moving internal combustion engine, the buzz of electric-powered roadsters are at a disadvantage when it comes to furnishing the sensual romance of sports car driving. Though the uninterrupted rush of hearing almost every ripple in the road and force of the wind in hair can become a new level of love for a Porsche sports car driver, electric sports cars as well as electric vehicles silent running quality is becoming a concern. Using Active Sound Design, the Porsche Boxster E has been able to create a tone to alert of its presence.
Porsche’s contribution to a master research mission by the German Federal Ministry of Transportation called Model Region Electro-Mobility Stuttgart; the Boxster E is only slated to be used in dedicated real world testing. Porsche currently has no production plans for all-electric vehicles but claims their efforts with the Boxster E will “…shape tomorrow’s products.”
Information and photo source: Porsche Cars GB via Newspress UK