Engineering, Technology

Porsche’s New Electric Concept Car Could Give Tesla Trouble

 

[dropcap]Porsche[/dropcap] might not be saying it directly, but anyone taking even a quick glance can see the Germans are taking aim at Tesla with the freshly unveiled Mission E concept at the Frankfurt Motor Show. With over 590 horsepower, this electric sedan doesn’t have quite as much electric grunt as a Model S, but the claimed 310.7 miles of range would outdo even the latest take on Elon Musk’s four-door with a 90 kWh battery. For those keeping track, a Ludicrous Speed-equipped Tesla might still be the ultimate victor in a drag race because the E’s sprint to 62 takes “under 3.5 seconds.”

To power the Mission E, Porsche’s engineers use two permanent magnet synchronous motors, and they are similar to what’s found on the company’s 919 Hybrid LMP1 racecar. In a single unit, the devices can both accelerate and recover braking energy. All-wheel drive with torque vectoring and four-wheel steering help the electric sedan lap the Nordschleife in less than eight minutes, the company claims.

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Porsche-Missiohn-E-front-view

Drive System:

The drive system of the Mission E is entirely new, yet it is typical Porsche, i.e. proven in motor racing. Two permanent magnet synchronous motors (PMSM) – similar to those used in this year’s Le Mans victor, the 919 hybrid – accelerate the sports car and recover braking energy.

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Porsche-Missiohn-E-rear

Driving Range:

It is not just passionate sportiness that makes up a Porsche but also a high level of everyday practicality. Accordingly, the Mission E can travel over 500 km on one battery charge, and it can be charged with enough energy for around 400 km more driving range in about fifteen minutes.

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Porsche-Missiohn-E-at-frankfurt-2015

A moveable body segment on the front left wing in front of the driver’s door gives access to the charging port for the innovative “Porsche Turbo Charging” system. Via the 800-volt port, the battery can be charged to approximately 80 per cent of its capacity in around 15 minutes – a record time for electric vehicles

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Porsche-Missiohn-E-concept-frankfurt-1

Design:

A new type of matrix LED headlights in the brand’s typical four-point light design captures the viewer’s gaze. Integrated as an element hovering in the airflow of the air inlet, they lend a futuristic character to the front end.
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Porsche-Missiohn-E-dashboard

Display and Control Concept:

A new world based on an innovative display and control concept opens up before the driver. It is intuitive, fast and free of distractions – created for the sports car of tomorrow. The filigree driver’s display is curved, low-profile and free-standing. The instrument cluster shows five round instruments – they can be recognized as Porsche, but they are displayed virtually in OLED technology

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Porsche-Missiohn-E-foot-rest

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Porsche-Missiohn-E-interior

Holographic display:

The entire dashboard is chock full of new ideas. Its division into two three-dimensionally structuring layers reinforces the impression of lightness and clarity. The upper layer integrates the driver’s display, and between the levels there is a holographic display that extends far into the passenger’s side. It shows individually selectable apps, which are stacked in virtual space and arranged by priority with a three-dimensional effect.

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Porsche-Missiohn-E-interior-1

The driver – or passenger – can use these apps to touch-free control primary functions such as media, navigation, climate control, contacts and vehicle. The desired symbol is activated by gestures that are detected by sensors. A grasping gesture means select, while pulling means control. Moreover, driver or passenger can use a touch display on the centre console to control secondary functions such as detailed information menus.

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Porsche-Missiohn-E-side

Driving dynamics:

The battery mounted in the car’s underbody, which is based on the latest lithium-ion technology, runs the whole length between the front and rear axles. This distributes its weight to the two drive axles uniformly, resulting in exceptionally good balance. 

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Porsche-Missiohn-E-tail-light

The body as a whole is made up of a functional mix of aluminium, steel and carbon fibre reinforced polymer. The wheels are made of carbon: the Mission E has wide tyres mounted on 21-inch wheels in front and 22-inch wheels at the rear.

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Capable of hitting 124 mph in less than 12 seconds, the Mission E is undoubtedly quick, but its speed in charging is especially impressive too. The concept utilizes an 800-volt system that Porsche claims can charge the sedan to 80 percent in just 15 minutes, assuming you can find a source for that much energy. That would be enough to offer about 249 miles of range in less time than getting a cup of coffee at a busy Starbucks. The E could also use a traditional 400-volt charger or power up inductively.

The Mission E’s design looks like a futuristic Panamera as filtered through the style of the 918 and a next-gen Star Wars Stormtrooper helmet. In an especially cool touch, the charging port is hidden in a movable panel ahead of the driver’s door on the front fender. Also, like like lots of four-door concepts in recent memory, the design sports suicide doors with no B-pillars. To keep weight to a minimum, the body mixes aluminum, steel, and carbon-fiber reinforced polymer. Also present are carbon-fiber wheels. Inside, drivers get instruments that track their eyes so that the gauges always remain visible. There’s a video below, but stay tuned for a closer look at the Mission E from the show floor in Frankfurt.

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