Aston Martin’s first electric car arrives next year with 602 horsepower in tow

Aston Martin Rapide E teaserThe first electric car from legendary British automaker Aston Martin will launch next year. It’s an electric version of the current Rapide four-door called the Rapide E that will be built in extremely limited numbers. The car was announced in 2015 as the RapidE, but judging from specifications released by Aston Martin, it should be worth the four-year wait.

The Rapide E will be powered by two electric motors, both spinning the rear wheels. The motors will produce a combined 602 horsepower and 700 pound-feet of torque. That’s admittedly less than the 800 to 1,000 hp quoted for the 2015 prototype, but it’s more than you can get in a gasoline Rapide.

A 65-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery pack sits where the standard Rapide’s 5.9-liter V12, transmission, and fuel tank normally reside. Aston is aiming for a range of at least 200 miles on the World Harmonized Light Vehicle Test Procedure (WLTP) used in Europe. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) range figure may be different. Crucially, the Rapide E will be equipped with an 800-volt electrical system, similar to what Porsche is planning for its Taycan, allowing for faster charging at up to 100 kilowatts.

Aston claims the Rapide E will be able to accelerate from 0 to 60 mph in under 4.0 seconds, jump from 50 to 70 mph in 1.5 seconds, and reach a top speed of 155 mph. Aston stressed that these figures won’t just be achievable when the battery is fully charged. The automaker claims the Rapide E can handle a full lap of the 12.9-mile Nürburgring without any loss of performance. The Aston may not be able to match the acceleration of a Tesla Model S P100D, but perhaps it will have superior endurance.

Production will be limited to just 155 units, with deliveries scheduled for the fourth quarter of 2019. Aston did not discuss pricing or U.S. availability. The Rapide E will be a trial run of sorts for future Aston electric cars. Aston will solicit feedback from customers to inform development of those higher-volume models. In that sense, the Rapide E will similar to the Mini E, BMW ActiveE, and other early electric cars used by automakers to test the waters with customers before launching full-scale production.

The Rapide E will be built at Aston’s new factory in St. Athan, Wales. Aston plans to follow the Rapide E with a line of electric cars under the Lagonda sub-brand. The first of those models, likely a sedan based on the recent Lagonda Vision concept, is expected to launch in 2021.

Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Self-balancing skates, tiny tripods, and more

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the Web this week. You can't buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!

Lucid Motors accepts $1 billion investment from Saudi Arabian fund

The Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia will invest $1 billion in upstart electric car company Lucid Motors. Lucid hopes to launch a Tesla-fighting luxury sedan called the Air by 2020.

Audi is finally taking the wraps off its Tesla-fighting e-tron electric SUV

The 2019 Audi e-tron is an electric SUV aimed at the Tesla Model X, Jaguar I-Pace, and Mercedes-Benz EQC. It's Audi's first mass-market electric car, but will it make a good first impression?
Product Review

It looks like a concept, but the Lexus LC500 is very much a real-life stunner

The LC500 sports car combines exotic looks, a raucous V8 engine, sumptuous interior, and responsive steering to make one of the most compelling Lexus-badged models ever and one of the sexiest vehicles on sale.
Product Review

Mercedes’ 2019 Sprinter proves vans don’t have to be low-tech

The 2019 Mercedes-Benz Sprinter boasts infotainment and driver-assist tech from Mercedes’ passenger cars. It’s not something normally seen on big vans, but it makes the Sprinter a much easier vehicle to use.

An elevator in your garage? Boring Company gets OK to test Loop Lift from tunnel

The Hawthorne (California) City Council gave Elon Musk's Boring Company the go-ahead to construct a Loop Lift prototype. The lift will connect the company's existing underground hyperloop to a residential garage.

We get up close with the Vision iNext concept to learn about BMW’s future

Through a massive worldwide campaign that visits various major cities around the world, we get our exclusive opportunity to get up close and personal with BMW’s latest Vision iNEXT Concept to learn about automaker’s future plans.

Uber has decided to leave its broadly derided current logo ‘behind’

Rideshare giant Uber has a new brand image. The new wordmark logo replaces Uber's previous brand icon, a circular graphic that was derided as an "asshole" symbol that walked away from a clear brand identifier.

Startup inks ‘world’s largest deal’ for driverless grocery deliveries

An increasing number of companies are testing delivery services using autonomous vehicles. Startup Udelv already has experience of running a trial in San Francisco, with Oklahoma City, Oklahoma set to become its next destination.
Product Review

Alfa Romeo delivers the quintessential Italian high-performance SUV

Alfa’s Romeo’s Ferrari-powered sport utility delivers hair-raising straight-line performance, admirable capability in the corners, and head-turning style, but comes up a bit short in a few key areas.
Smart Home

Amazon reportedly will introduce an Alexa-enabled microwave, amp, and more

Amazon's Fall 2018 Alexa device rollout is about to begin, sources say. Look for an Alexa microwave, an amplifier, receiver, and subwoofer, and an Alexa voice-responsive device for your car. Amazon is maximizing its voice-command presence.

Elon Musk: Tesla is bringing most collision repair in-house, outsiders too slow

Dissatisfied with third-party collision repair shops, Tesla CEO Elon Musk took to Twitter to announce the firm is bring most repair work in-house. The goal is a car as good or better than new with repair completed in under an hour.

Volkswagen built a 210-mph Jetta, and broke a land-speed record with it

A modified 2019 Volkswagen Jetta just set a land-speed record at the Bonneville Salt Flats in the G/BGC class. Boasting a 600-horsepower engine, the Jetta hit 210 mph on the salt.
Emerging Tech

Smart sound system will give every car passenger their own wireless audio stream

Can't agree on what to listen to in the car? Imagine if each passenger could get their own way, courtesy of a personal audio stream — no headphones required. Sounds impossible, but it's almost here.