800V battery Aston Martin’s Rapide E takes first steps

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Aston Martin CEO Andy Palmer on Monday gave an update on the progress of the company’s first electric car, the Rapide E. He uploaded a video to Twitter showing a prototype on the move. According to the tweet, it was the first time a prototype for the Rapide E was driven under its own power.

It’s certainly eerie seeing Aston Martin’s svelte sedan, which normally packs a raucous V-12, moving silently on electric power alone.

“A moment of @astonmartin history. First Validation Prototype Aston Martin Rapide E moves under its own power for the very first time with its breakthrough 800v battery. Great work from the development team which includes Williams Engineering”, Palmer posted.

The vehicle is seen driving slowly along a stretch of a car park which is home to some very expensive vehicles. Rapid E is a long time coming vehicle after first being unveiled in 2015. At the time the vehicle was a prototype of a Rapid E converted to accommodate an all-electric drivetrain.

In 2017, the company partnered with Williams Advanced Engineering, which is the tech arm of the William F1 team, to develop the electric powertrain of the vehicle.

Car details 

It is expected to be powered by “an 800V battery electrical architecture with 65kWh installed capacity using over 5600 lithium ion 18650 format cylindrical cells”. This will power two rear-mounted electric motors which produce a combined output of around 610PS and 950Nm of torque.

Projected performance specs released by the firm in September last year suggested the car could sprint from 0-60mp in under four seconds and on to a top speed of 155mph.