The first all-electric British hypercar makes its world debut in London
17 July 2019
The world’s first fully electric British hypercar, the all-new Lotus Evija, has been revealed and it’s only £1.7 million…
As a name, Evija (pronounced ‘E-vi-ya’) means ‘the first in existence’ or ‘the living one’. It is the first hypercar from Lotus, and the company’s first model with an electrified powertrain. Production is limited to not more than 130 examples.
The Evija is the first Lotus road car to feature a one-piece carbon fibre monocoque chassis. The cabin, from the fully adjustable race-style seats to the multi-function steering wheel, is the very pinnacle of motorsport-inspired road car design and technology.
At the heart of the Evija is an ultra-advanced all-electric powertrain. It has been developed by technical partner Williams Advanced Engineering, famed for success in motorsport, from Formula One to electrifying the first four seasons of Formula E. The battery pack is mid-mounted immediately behind the two seats and supplies energy directly to four powerful e-motors. This highly efficient system is the lightest, most energy dense, electric power package ever fitted to a road car. With a target weight of just 1,680kg, it will be the lightest pure electric hypercar ever to go into series production.
Engineered for precise and sustained performance, the Evija has five driving modes – Range, City, Tour, Sport and Track. It can race from 0-62mph in under three seconds and accelerate to a top speed of more than 200mph.
The Evija is priced from £1.7m plus duties and taxes. A £250,000 deposit secures a production slot. Order books are now open through www.lotuscars.com. Hethel, close to the historic city of Norwich in the east of England, UK, has been the home of Lotus since 1966. The company has confirmed production of the Evija will begin there during 2020.
Advanced pure EV powertrain means record-breaking power
With target figures of 2,000PS of power and 1,700Nm of torque, the Lotus Evija is the world’s most powerful production road car. Key to that power output is the 2,000kW lithium-ion battery, supplied with its management system by Williams Advanced Engineering (WAE) as part of a joint venture with Lotus to collaborate on advanced propulsion technologies.
The battery pack is mounted centrally behind the passenger compartment, and its cover is visible through the glass rear screen. This positioning delivers significant advantages in terms of styling, aerodynamics, packaging, weight distribution, occupant comfort and dynamic handling. It also supports fast and convenient servicing and maintenance. Furthermore, the set-up has been designed so that in the future alternative battery packs – for example, to optimise track performance – can be easily installed.
Power is fed from the battery pack to a bespoke in-line axial arrangement of two high-power density e-motors. These feature integrated silicon carbide inverters and epicyclic transmission on each axle of the four-wheel drive powertrain. The motors and inverters being supplied by Integral Powertrain Ltd.
Four compact, extremely light and highly efficient single-speed, helical gear ground planetary gearboxes transfer power to each driveshaft. Supplied by Xtrac and measuring a mere 100mm in depth, each gearbox comes packaged with the e-motor and inverter as a single cylindrical Electrical Drive Unit (EDU). With a target power of 500PS per e-motor, this is the most efficient and elegant engineering solution to deploying so much power with precision.
A revolution in charging
Not only does the Lotus Evija feature the world’s most powerful automotive drivetrain, it also boasts the world’s fastest charging battery. Thanks to the partnership with Williams Advanced Engineering, the battery has the ability to accept an 800kW charge. Although charging units capable of delivering this are not yet commercially available, when they are it will be possible to fully replenish the battery in just nine minutes.
Using existing charging technology – such as a 350kW unit, which is currently the most powerful available – the Evija’s charge time will be 12 mins to 80% and 18 mins to 100%. The car’s range is 250 miles on the WLTP Combined Cycle, or 270 miles on the NEDC Combined Cycle.
Lotus Evija – did you know?
• With a target power output of 2,000PS, the Lotus Evija has more power at each wheel than the total power of any other Lotus road car ever produced.
• The Lotus Evija produces 1,700Nm of torque. In a tug-of-war, you could put four of the Lotus Evora Sport 410 at the other end of the rope and still not out-pull it.
• At the heart of the Lotus Evija is a 2,000kW battery. That means it’s eight times more powerful than a Formula E race car. Put another way, it’s enough electricity to boil more than 1,600 domestic kettles.
• The ‘mid-mounted’ positioning of the battery pack provides advantages in terms of aerodynamics and weight distribution to optimise handling. It also echoes the celebrated Lotus mid-engined sports car layout.
• The Lotus Evija has a Venturi tunnel through each rear quarter. These are named for the Venturi Effect, the reduction in air pressure which results when it flows through a constricted section of a pipe. It was discovered by Giovanni Venturi, an Italian physicist, in 1797 – exactly 222 years ago.