2005 Saleen S7 Twin Turbo, Los Angeles Auto ShowEnlarge Photo
"A trend, not a fad" is how American supercar builder Saleen has described electric cars--and why it intends to build its own in the next few years.
That's an impressive commitment from a company best known for gas-guzzling supercars like the Saleen S7 and highly-modified versions of the Ford Mustang--and says the new car will be "revolutionary in its aesthetics and mechanics".
According to Autocar, company boss Steve Saleen says the new vehicle will offer the "styling and craftsmanship" associated with the Saleen brand.
It has a lot to live up to in terms of performance, too. The last vehicle Saleen produced, the S7 Twin Turbo, used a 7-liter twin-turbocharged Ford V-8, producing 750 horsepower and 700 lb-ft of torque. That car was capable of hitting 60 mph in 2.8 seconds and going on to 248 mph.
Saleen adds that the rapid progress of electric car development should mean expedited development for its new vehicle--and that its entrance into the market is "timely".
The market for electric supercars isn't a large one but it should at least be better populated by the time Saleen's offering arrives.
2014 sees the launch of three plug-in hypercars, hailing from some of the automotive world's biggest names: Porsche, Ferrari and McLaren. The 918 Spyder, LaFerrari and McLaren P1 all feature power figures in the 800-900 horsepower range yet each lets its driver cruise silently on battery power for a limited distance.
With each priced around $1 million though, we're hoping Saleen's electric supercar will prove more affordable...