We Call B.S. on Battery Claims
About 6 months ago we covered the announcement by Shelby SuperCars (SSC) that it would make the "World's Fastest Electric Car" and explained why we thought these types of "halo" EVs have a role to play. But back then, SSC hadn't released much technical details... Maybe it was better that way.
Read on for more details.
Straight from Shelby's press release:
SSC's Nanotechnology Rechargeable Lithium Battery pack is rechargeable in only 10 minutes on a standard 110 outlet and has a 150-200 mile range on a single charge. This means that in a typical 8 hour day, the car using this technology could go 200 miles, charge for 10 minutes (the time it typically takes to fill up a tank of gas), then drive 200 more miles, charge for 10 minutes and continue on. Some other EV technologies necessitate an overnight charge creating a class of "commuter electric cars" and are not practical alternatives to gas combustion automobiles.
Unless it has access to battery technology vastly superior to even what we know is in development in some labs, this claim is simply unrealistic. Just the number of amps that you'd have to pump through a 110-volt outlet doesn't make sense (would be many hundreds, up to thousands, depending on battery size).
We hope this was slipped in the press release by a clueless PR person (they love putting "nanotechnology" everywhere - Eric Drexler would spinning in his grave if he was dead) and that SSC's engineers know what they're doing, because their powertrain shows promise:
"The AESP's [All-Electric Scalable Powertrain] main feature is its scalability. The all-electric SUV or delivery truck is now a reality in the not-so-distant future. The AESP is scalable from 200 horsepower for economy and midsize cars, to 500 horsepower for light trucks and SUVs, and up to 1200 horsepower for delivery trucks, heavy duty equipment, buses and military vehicles."
So if it's really good, SSC could license it to other companies so that it's used on a larger scale than just expensive low-volume supercars.
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