This Brand-New Electric Sports Car Charges 80 Percent of Its Battery in Five Minutes
We are entering the golden age of electric car startups, with largely unknown players like Rivian, EVelozcity, Byton, and many others joining soon-to-be-released battery-powered models from well-known brands such as Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz, Porsche, and Volvo. Add to these the existing vehicles from the likes of Tesla and Jaguar, and we may finally tip the scales to help move upscale mainstream consumers into electric cars, thus eliminating climate-change-causing tailpipe emissions, and enjoying the silent, instant-on thrust of electric power.
Add to that extensive list a new, enticing marque and model, the Piëch Mark Zero. The first vehicle from the German/Swiss carmaker started by Toni Piëch—a relative of Ferdinand Piëch, a member of the founding VW/Porsche family and former chairman of the giant VW Group—the Mark Zero combines traditional sports car design with an innovative power train.
This means that, unlike many electric cars that take advantage of the liberating design opportunities opened up when a vehicle no longer needs a big hood to house an engine up front or a big gas tank under the rear seats out back, the Mark Zero has classical proportions with a prodigious hood and a foreshortened rear deck. This big prow seems a bit mysterious, since the car’s battery packs are mounted in a tunnel between the seats as well as above the rear axle, offering a low seating position and ideal sports car–like weight balance. But it seems that the car is designed to also allow for a traditional internal combustion engine to reside up front, and even a gasoline/electric hybrid system.
In terms of those battery packs, the Mark Zero purports to have harnessed a vague and alchemical-sounding technological jump that allows its cells to be fast-charged to 80 percent of their capacity in under five minutes, without the massive heat-related issues endemic to electric charging. Battery partners the Desten Group and charging partners Qingdao TGOOD Electric Co. are both based in China.
We have not seen any tests of these new batteries nor of the charging infrastructure that is alleged to support it. But if it all works as claimed, it is meant to deliver blistering three-second zero-to-60-m.p.h. acceleration, a 155 m.p.h. top speed, and more than 300 miles of battery powered range. No word on pricing, though with small manufacturing volumes and high technology, we would expect it to be very expensive. Even if the electric powertrain is vaporware, the car is a lovely and sensual design, and we always welcome that.