Detroit Electric unveiled SP:01 at 2013 Shanghai Motor Show

Article by Anita Panait, on April 23, 2013

Detroit Electric unveiled its new high-performance electric sports car, the SP:01, at the Shanghai Motor Show on April 20, 2013. Detroit Electric developed and designed the SP:01, a limited-edition, two-seat pure-electric sports car, to set new benchmark for performance and handling in the electric vehicle (EV) segment.

The public global debut of the SP:01 provides a glimpse of the sports EV’s dynamic design as well as technologies. Detroit Electric launched the new SP:01 under the brand’s mantra of ‘Pure Electric Excitement’ at its headquarters in Detroit on April 3, 2013.

The SP:01 is regarded as the world’s fastest pure-electric production car, being able to accelerate from zero to 62 mph in just 3.7 seconds and achieve a top speed of 155 mph (249 km/h).  That feat is made possible by fitting a compact, mid-mounted 201-bhp electric motor that provides 166 lb ft of torque, a lightweight battery pack, and an all-new carbon-fiber bodywork.

The rear-wheel-drive sports EV’s excellent performance is mainly attributable to its impressive power-to-weight ratio. The SP:01 superior driving dynamics and class-leading handling are made possible by its weight, which stands at a light 2,354 lbs. The SP:01 is underpinned by a strong yet lightweight aluminum platform and was unveiled after a a five-year development and road-test program. 

The sports EV’s all-new carbon-fiber bodywork is similar to those used in Formula 1 vehicle chassis. It also boasts of having a specialized performance-tuned suspension, steering and brake systems that all contribute to exceptional ride and handling attributes. To provide instantaneous torque for impressive acceleration, the SP:01’s powertrain creates an electromagnetic field around the rotor shaft, which then spins at varying speeds to drive the wheels.

Drivers can select one of four gear ratios for optimal acceleration, although there is minimal need to change gear regularly to ensure brisk progress.  The SP:01 went on sale in early April. The interest in the sports EV was overwhelming as 35 orders were placed within an hour of the start of its sale.

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