Ariel, the British automaker famed for minimalist track-ready sports cars, is hopping aboard the EV train with a little help from its friends at Cosworth.
Overnight the company unveiled the Hipercar prototype, which will enter production in around two years from now – albeit potentially with a new name and some other changes.
When it enters production in two years’ time, the electric vehicle will be available with two drivetrain options: a four-motor all-wheel drive system or two-motor rear-wheel drive setup.
While this prototype uses 3D-printed carbon-fibre panels, the final version will have a full carbon-fibre body paired to a bonded aluminium chassis with aluminium front and rear subframes.
Unlike the Ariel Atom, which has an eye-catching exposed frame, the Hipercar will be a fully-type approved vehicle subjected to all the crash and emissions testing of regular cars. This means the underlying details like that need to be hidden away.
The Hipercar is a fully-enclosed coupe with swing-up doors, and its striking body is adorned with fins all over.
At present the all-wheel drive variant generates a total of 880kW and 1800Nm. Ariel says the Hipercar can complete the 0-60mph (0-97km/h) dash in 2.09 seconds, and hit 100mph (161km/h) in 4.4 seconds.
Once the torque vectoring system has been fully tuned, the automaker expects the 0-60mph time to fall below the 2.0 second mark, while the 0-100mph sprint should be done in under four.
The rear-wheel drive model uses the same electric motors as the all-wheel drive version, so total output is said to be 440kW and 900Nm, although no performance figures have been announced for this variant.
A Cosworth-supplied 800V 62kWh lithium-ion battery pack is said to provide the car with 241km of range using the WLTP testing standard.
If that’s not enough, the Hipercar can be specified with a 35kW Cosworth turbine range extender that recharges the battery while on the go.
Pricing has yet to be finalised, but the production Hipercar is expected to start below £1 million ($1.7 million).