Aston Martin Rapide E makes first public appearance at Monaco e-Grand Prix


The Aston Martin Rapide E just made its public debut sitting on a stand at the Shanghai auto show last month, but the company didn't wait long to show it off blasting around a track.

The car appeared Saturday racing around the street circuit set up for the Formula E Monaco Grand Prix, which was run on Saturday on a shortened version of the Monaco Grand Prix track.

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The Rapide E is an electric car based on Aston Martin's Rapide four-door sports sedan, designed as a track-day car for wealthy buyers. It has 200 miles of electric range, but was designed to provide full power for sustained runs around long tracks such as Germany's famous 16-mile Nürburgring without overheating or cutting power.

The Monaco Formula E track is only 1.1 miles long, versus 2.1 miles for the standard Monaco GP track.

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On Saturday, the Rapide E was driven by Aston Martin factory race driver Darren Turner, who came out and lapped the track twice.

Aston says the Rapide E can accelerate from 0-60 mph in 4 seconds, and from 50 to 70 mph—for passing or hurling out of a sweeping curve—in 1.5 seconds. Perhaps to keep those wealthy would-be hot-shoes alive, top speed is limited to 155 mph. The company did not disclose the Rapide E's fastest lap time on the circuit.

The Rapide E will use an 800-volt electrical architecture that will allow it to gain 160 miles of range in less than 10 minutes.

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Aston Martin will begin building 155 examples at its new factory in St. Athan, Wales, later this year, and CEO Andy Palmer (formerly the product manager at Nissan, overseeing the Leaf), says it may beat the Porsche Taycan to market as the first EV available with 800-volt batteries.

The Taycan is also expected to go into production late this year. No more specific time frame has been offered for either car.

 
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