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Evonik presents electric Elise weighing less than 1,000 kg

Evonik Industries is presenting the lightweight battery-electric Elise-E at the Car Symposium in Bochum. The vehicle weighs 950 kg (2,094 lb), has a power of 150 kW, accelerates from 0 to 100 km/h in 4.4 seconds and has a top speed limited to 200 km/h (124 mph).

The purpose of exhibiting the vehicle is to show the automotive industry what can be achieved with our expertise in chemicals.

—Klaus Hedrich, Head of the Evonik Automotive Industry Team

The vehicle is a combination of automotive components made with the specialty chemical components of the Essen-based Evonik and the automotive technology of the British sports car manufacturer Lotus. The necessary power comes from a lithium-ion battery with CERIO storage technology.

Evonik-elise
Elise-E. Click to enlarge.

At the core of this battery is the ceramic high-performance separator SEPARION, which is extremely thin and highly heat-resistant. It separates the anode reliably from the cathode and sets new standards for lithium ion cells in terms of cycle stability, performance output and safety by using additional components, according to Evonik. In addition, the separator allows for the highly compact design of the battery cells, which results in high energy density at a low weight.

The weight of the electrical sports car’s body has also been reduced with Evonik technologies. The sandwich structure with the structural foam ROHACELL and carbon fibers makes the body 60-70% lighter than a comparable steel structure.

Evonik applied a new resin infusion process with an innovative epoxy resin formula based on the VESTAMIN hardener technology to manufacture it. This process allows for class-A surfaces and reliable quality in the serial manufacture of composite automotive body parts.

Side windows made of PLEXIGLAS also contributed to the weight reduction, as they have a weight-saving potential of 40-50% compared to conventional mineral glass. In addition to reduced weight, further advantages of the glazing consist of excellent transparency, high resistance to weather, pleasant acoustics and excellent shaping properties.

Vehicles with less weight and high power have to be safe and sustainable on the road. In this fast-running electrical vehicle, this is ensured by special lightweight tires, which were developed with high-performance Silica ULTRASIL and the silane Si 363 manufactured by Evonik. They reduce the rolling resistance of the tires by approx. 20%, leading to energy savings of about 5%.

Comments

jfinlayson

Interesting, but it's difficult to assess their accomplishment without knowing the capacity (kWh, not kW) of the battery. It's no breakthrough to build a light EV if it only goes 20 miles per charge.

For comparison, the Tesla Roadster, built on the same Lotus Elise glider and body, weighs 1235 kg, but about 450 kg of that is a battery big enough to move it 393 kilometers (244 miles). If you reduced the size of that battery pack (and its range) so that it matched the 100 mile range of the Nissan Leaf, for example, it would weigh about 970kg.

They do claim that their battery has "high energy density", but provide no numbers to support that claim. I checked their press release, but there's no number there, either.

SJC

I would like to see an aluminum space frame and polymer panel mid size EV. Plenty of room for 4 people and under 3000 pounds with batteries. Put fast recharge at coffee shops and you might just have a commuter car with no imported oil consumption.

ai_vin

The Zytek Lotus Elise was an electric sports car jointly produced by Lotus and Zytek, from 1998 and discontinued in 2003. It had a range of 100-120 miles and a curb weight of 875 kilograms (1,930 lb). Now add 75 kg and 10 years of battery development.

HarveyD

Unless the battery can supply about 300 miles e-range, this may not be much better than the 875 Kilograms, 1998 version?

HarveyD

Mindset E-Motion claims that their battery pack has 2x the energy density of other EVs i.e. 200 Kg for 52.8 Kwh or 260 Wh/Kg instead of 130 Kwh/Kg.

If Tesla could use two of those battery packs (i.e 400 Kg instead of 450 Kgs for the current pack) in their Roadster, it could go almost 500 miles between charges and would be considered good enough for a full day drive.
It could be considered to be equivalent to ICEV version highway performance?

SJC

My view on the commuter car is that you do not need a long range. The employer may or may not install chargers, but if the combined round trip distance is under 100 miles, you charge at home. In the rare case that you use up some of the range you need to get home, you stop by a cafe and charge for 10-15 minutes for an extra 30-40 miles to get home.

Davemart

The VW E-Up is due to enter production summer 2013.
It weighs a couple of humdred kgs more than the 929kg of the standard model:
http://www.autoexpress.co.uk/carreviews/firstdrives/278086/volkswagen_e_up.html

The Electric Fiat 500 is another light weight due to enter production this financial year:
http://www.plugincars.com/ceo-sergio-marchionne-confirms-2012-production-electric-fiat-500-112054.html

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