Mustang and supercar master Saleen dives into the world of performance EVs

saleen automotive confirms electric car plans s5s raptor

Saleen Automotive is going green.

The brand known for its tuned American muscle cars and the S7 supercar announced that it will build an electric car.

“We recognize that electric cars are a trend, not a fad and expect this vehicle category to continue to increase as an automotive option for consumers,” Saleen Automotive founder and CEO Steve Saleen said in a statement.

Saleen will release more details, along with scale models of the car, in the coming months. Until then, Steve Saleen and his company are keeping the project under wraps.

So what could a Saleen electric car be like?

While Saleen’s seemingly abrupt decision to build an electric car may inspire some skepticism, the company has pulled off miracles before. In the early 2000s, Saleen went from modifying Ford Mustangs to building the S7, a supercar that stood toe-to-toe with the best exotics from Ferrari, Lamborghini, and Porsche.

Steve Saleen recently told Autoblog that his company is working on a successor to the S7. Whether this “S8” is in any way related to the electric-car project is unknown.

An electric performance car definitely fits the Saleen M.O. The S7 is the only bespoke vehicle to ever wear the Saleen badge; a successor called the S5S Raptor (pictured above) was planned, but got lost in the shuffle of the Great Recession.

An electric Saleen sports car could compete against the plug-in hybrid BMW i8, as well as the increasingly-theoretical Detroit Electric SP:01.

The electric-car project is latest sign of life from an automotive brand that’s been in the legal Twilight Zone for several years.

Steve Saleen left his original company, Saleen Inc., in 2009 and later formed SMS Supercars, expanding his repertoire to include tuned Chevrolet Camaros and Dodge Challengers. Saleen Inc. was subsequently sold, and Steve Saleen challenged the new owners’ right to use his name. He won the legal battle and united the two companies under the Saleen Automotive banner.

With all that over with, Steve Saleen is probably eager to get back to making cars, not court appearances. Hopefully this new electric car will live up to its name.


Car-branded phones need to make a U-turn if they ever want to impress

Your car and your smartphone are becoming one, yet smartphones branded or co-created by car companies are a problem. We look at the history, some examples of the best and worst, then share hopes for the future.

The best compact cars pack full-size features in fun-size packages

The best compact cars on the market rival their counterparts in many ways, proving that bigger isn’t always better. Here, we've rounded up some of the better options available, including an SUV and an electric alternative.

Driving a prototype 2020 Passat at Volkswagen’s Arizona Proving Ground

Volkswagen’s Arizona Proving Ground is where new cars are tested to the breaking point, including the 2020 Passat midsize sedan. Ride along as the new Passat completes testing ahead of its 2019 launch.
Emerging Tech

With this robotic garage, retrieving your car is like using a vending machine

Remembering where we parked our cars can be a real pain. But what if our cars came to find us, rather than the other way around? A new automated robot parking valet system aims to help.

Aston Martin’s 1,000-hp Valkyrie will boast the Mona Lisa of the engine world

Aston Martin has released new details about its F1-inspired Valkyrie hypercar. Co-developed with Red Bull Racing, the Valkyrie will be one of the most aerodynamic production cars ever made.

The redesigned 2020 Passat shows Volkswagen still believes in sedans

The sedan segment in America is shrinking, but Volkswagen still believes in it. The German firm has released a teaser sketch to preview the redesigned 2020 Passat it will introduce during the 2019 Detroit Auto Show.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Booze-filled ski poles and crypto piggy banks

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!

Infiniti previews its leap into one of the hottest industry segments

Infiniti has released a teaser image to preview a concept it will unveil at the 2019 Detroit Auto Show. The yet-unnamed design study is an electric crossover shaped by Infiniti's newest design language.

What’s next for in-car entertainment? Audi believes it knows

Audi is bringing two technologies to CES 2019. The first turns a car -- a luxury sedan, in this case -- into a drive-in movie theater. The second is presented as a new entertainment format that turns the journey into the destination.
Product Review

The all-new 3 Series proves BMW can still build a compelling sport sedan

Seat time in the entry-level BMW 330i ($41,425) and M340i xDrive ($54,995) will test the German automaker’s commitment to driving dynamics, powertrain refinement, and cutting edge technology.

California wants all-electric public bus fleet on its roads by 2040

California approved a regulation that targets an all-electric public bus fleet for the whole state by 2040. The effect of the full implementation of the regulation is equivalent to taking 4 million cars off the road.

1,000-mph Bloodhound supersonic car project finds a last-minute savior

The Bloodhound supersonic car (SSC) project has found a buyer. The project was going to be disbanded after running out of funds, but its assets were purchased by British businessman Ian Warhurst.

Ford’s prototype Quiet Kennel uses noise-canceling tech to keep dogs stress-free

Ford is ending 2018 by venturing into the doghouse market. The company's European division has built a kennel equipped with active noise-canceling technology and soundproof walls that help dogs sleep through fireworks.
Emerging Tech

Self-driving dirt rally vehicle offers crash course in autonomous car safety

Georgia Tech's AutoRally initiative pushes self-driving cars to their limit by getting scaled-down autonomous vehicles to drive really, really fast and aggressively on dirt roads. Here's why.