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Electric Aston Martin Rapide E breaks cover with 610 hp, 200-mile range

by Ronan Glon

It's limited to 155 examples.

Aston Martin traveled to the 2019 Shanghai auto show to unveil the Rapide E, its first electric model.

As its name implies, the Rapide E is an electric version of the Rapide S. Working with the help of Williams Advanced Engineering, Aston engineers yanked out the 12-cylinder engine and installed a 65-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery pack stored in a case made from carbon fiber and Kevlar. The battery pack takes up the space previously occupied by the V12, by the eight-speed transmission, and by the fuel tank. It delivers about 200 miles of driving range. Quick-charging 800-volt technology fills the pack with up to 310 miles of range per hour.

Two electric motors transfer 610 horsepower and 700 pound-feet of torque to the rear wheels through a limited-slip differential. The Rapide E takes approximately four seconds to reach 60 mph from a stop, and it tops out at 155 mph. Aston Martin claims it went to great lengths to ensure the sedan's performance is repeatable; it can accelerate over and over again and do one full lap of the Nürburgring without sending the battery pack or the motors into limp mode.

To put the aforementioned figures into perspective, the gasoline-powered Rapide S uses a 6.0-liter V12 that delivers 552 horsepower and 465 pound-feet of torque. It takes 4.4 seconds to accelerate from zero to 60 mph, and it continues building speed until the speedometer shows 203 mph. The V12-powered sedan weighs about 4,400 pounds; Aston hasn't released the electric variant's weight.

Visually, stylists designed an E-specific grille and new forged aluminum wheels. The underbody is completely new as well, according to the firm. It directs air from the front splitter to the diffuser integrated into the rear bumper. Step inside and you'll find a 10-inch digital, driver-configurable instrument cluster that displays key information about the car and its surroundings. Alternatively, the driver can access important data (like the battery's state of charge) via a smartphone app.

Aston Martin will make only 155 examples of the Rapide E in its St. Athan, Wales, factory. The model is on-sale now, but the British firm says pricing is only available "on application." In other words: plan on spending a lot if you want to put Aston's first EV in your garage.

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