Will it ever happen? Could a fully electric car ever be considered a true supercar?
There are many questions that make us contemplate the eventuality of the electric car’s evolution, and once I set eyes on Khyzyl Saleem‘s latest render, it prompted me to share my thoughts on the subject with you. I guess I can break it all down into three main points:
• Design: A performance oriented offering from Tesla could take full advantage of the sheer simplicity of fully electric drivetrains. Aerodynamicists could sculpt a very slippery silhouette seeing that minimal air ducting and venting would be needed, and that could even be used to generate great levels of downforce without creating too much drag – an inherent problem of regular cars where the air needs to flow over, through, up and under things like engines and various mechanical ancillaries and components. As you can see from the roofline and flowing shoulder line, Khyzyl used a Saleen S7 as a base for his render, before slapping on the recognisable Tesla face with a large center grille and Model S-esque headlights. The aggressive stance, the massive brakes peeking behind the thin spokes of the wheels, and that flowing, spoiler-less profile really gets the juices flowing.
• Performance: In-hub motors could create the best all-wheel drive layout available, torque vectoring and all. Tweaking throttle response and feel would be one of the many challenges in engineering something that would feel ‘right,’ not to mention having to deal with stuff like regenerative braking. Maybe a gearbox would be needed to take advantage of the high-torque, off-idle characteristics of electric motors, helping the car reach the sort of top speeds now expected from the most sought after supercars and hypercars. Composites will have to be a massive part of the car, something that BMW is well on its way to proving can be done at a mass-production level. Shedding weight will continue to be the ultimate goal, which brings me to my final point.
• Batteries: These could be positioned to create a perfect weight distribution, and as Tesla has already shown in the Model S and X, keeping the mass as low as possible within a chassis makes for decent handling. As batteries become lighter and more efficient, the potential performance benefits are unlimited.
If Tesla manages to make the Model 3 a success it could indeed generate the funds needed to develop and bring a supercar to market. Considering what they were able to achieve with the Roadster 10 years ago, if Tesla’s engineers put their minds to it, I’m sure they’d be able to come up with something rather interesting.
Thanks to Khyzyl Saleem for the render
Dino Dalle Carbonare