Aston Martin has released more details of its upcoming fully-electric Rapide, a car which has been in the pipeline for quite some time. Now confirmed as the Rapide E, rather than the slightly clunkier RapidE moniker assigned to it previously, it is set to become the most powerful iteration of the model when it reaches customers next year.
Built in collaboration with Williams Advanced Engineering - which made headlines most recently for its work on Singer's 'Dynamics and Lightweighting Study' - the Rapide E's twin electric motors will produce over 610hp and 700lb ft of torque. That would be enough to propel the car from 0-60 in less than four seconds and on to a top speed of 155mph.
Aston, of course, claims that its first EV is aimed above offerings from a certain US manufacturer; comparisons seem somewhat inevitable, though, so here we go. A Ludicrous Plus equipped P100d develops 610hp and 713lb ft for a 0-60mph time of 2.4 seconds and a top speed of 155mph. That would make it quite a bit quicker off the line than the Rapide E, but Aston CEO Andy Palmer says that outright speed isn't the Rapide's focus.
Palmer previously told Autocar that it was designed to target "those guys looking for something above Tesla. That customer probably isn't looking for 'Ludicrous mode'. Our offer will have very credible acceleration - equal to a petrol Aston Martin - but you'll be able to drive the car rapidly all the way around the Nurburgring without it derating or conking out on you."
Shots fired! To back up Palmer's claims, the Rapide E will be able to call on all of its performance at almost any level of charge. This will bestow it with "the ability to cope with the daily demands of repeated hard acceleration and braking" or allow it to complete a full lap of the aforementioned circuit with "absolutely no derating of the battery". The Tesla on the other hand has been known to see its performance tail off as its battery drains, with one test seeing its 0-60 time rise by over 50 per cent as its power reserves depleted.
Aside from its powertrain, Aston has gone to great lengths to ensure its EV doesn't stand out too much. Though a unique set of aerodynamic wheels will tell it apart from the rest of the range visually, the spring and damper rates of the Rapide E have been recalibrated specifically to emulate the driving characteristics of its petrol powered peers. And it should be able to keep up with them on the autobahn, too, with that 155mph top speed able to be maintained continuously for more than 10 minutes.
As for range, Aston quotes a distance of "over 200 miles" based on the new WLTP tests, while Tesla reckons the P100D can make it around 330 miles on a single charge (although that figure is based on the notoriously unrealistic NEDC test). Meanwhile, a regular Rapide can travel over 400 miles on a single tank. When it comes to charging, an 800v outlet will allow the Rapide E to fully recharge in around 45 minutes.
The Rapide E will be built at Aston Martin's new St. Athan production facility, recently announced as the 'Home of Electrification' for both the Aston Martin and Lagonda brands. Interest can be registered now through the usual channels, with the first customer deliveries scheduled for the end of 2019. With just 155 examples to go around, though, you'd better be quick!