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In recent years, the automotive industry has come to realize just how fast electric powertrains can be.
One of the first brands to get behind performance was EVs Mercedes-Benz with its SLS E-Cell, and Audi joined them shortly after with the R8 E-Tron. Tesla has been making waves for some time now with its quick accelerating Model S and Model X P100D models, and Porsche will soon be joining the party with its Mission E sedan.
It was inevitable, then, that small supercar manufacturers would also begin to look at making pure electric cars. Speaking to AutoGuide at the recent Canadian International Auto Show, Koenigsegg CEO Christian von Koenigsegg said his company, which has only produced 120 cars to date, is highly interested in electrified powertrains.
Koenigsegg recently launched the Regera – a hybrid hypercar powered by a 5.0-liter twin-turbo V8 and a trio of electric motors with an output of 1,500 hp. Christian got the idea for an electrified Koenigsegg with a single direct drive gear after realizing how much he enjoyed the immediate acceleration of his Tesla Model S. He was just getting started with the Regera, though, and envisions electric motors being used in a variety of ways on future Koenigsegg cars.
“With the Regera, in many ways, if we were to remove the combustion aspect of it, it’s probably the most advanced EV in the world,” he said. “It has the world’s first homologated 800V propulsion system. Just the EV aspect of it is around 700hp, which is up there with one of the highest, and the battery pack only weighs 70 kilos, to get 700 hp. So that’s the most extreme battery system ever created for a road car. So in one way were kind of on the bleeding edge on EV technology, but it’s sort of hidden by the fact we also have a combustion engine in there.”
“We could, of course, expand on that and push for more EV and maybe not reduce the combustion engine side, but not increase it as much, or eventually make something that’s only EV and I think that will come. That technology is getting better and better very rapidly.”
The only drawback to a Koenigsegg EV, Christian explained, would be the noise. EVs may not be entirely silent, but the enthusiasts that buy his cars want to hear an engine roaring away behind their heads. That’s what makes the Regera so great, he explains – you get the instantaneous acceleration of an EV with the soundtrack of a 5.0-liter V8.
Unlike some other companies that are exploring electric powertrains and electric cars for emissions reasons, Koenigsegg is only interested in adding performance. Christian is guilt-free when it comes to his cars polluting – there’s only 120 of them, they are barely ever driven, and they can even run on clean fuel.
“I don’t think the environmental aspect when it comes to Koenigseggs is something to really consider so much because there’s so few cars, not driven usually as daily drivers, I mean we’re not polluting the world. And you can fill them up with Alcohol!”
this article first appeared on AutoGuide