New EV skateboard to power future classics
An innovative lightweight modular electric vehicle platform developed by a British startup is aimed squarely at niche manufacturers who want to go green. The Watt Electric Vehicle Company‘s PACES (Passenger And Commercial Vehicle EV Skateboard) has been designed to be adaptable to a wide range of machines, from six-wheeled trucks and buses to sports cars.
The architecture is scalable and can host front-, rear-, or all-wheel-drive powertrains, with batteries held low down in the chassis skateboard chassis. It’s built from lightweight aluminum extrusions that are bonded together (much like the system pioneered by the Lotus Elise).
Watt is partnering with other U.K. component manufacturers so that it can deliver a package including batteries, motors, and control systems ready for bodywork and interior to be fitted.
Founder Neil Yates says, “This state-of-the-art, modular platform has been specifically designed for low-volume manufacture, whether for a passenger saloon, sporty rear-wheel-drive roadster, or commercial vehicle.”
As a proof of concept, Watt is to produce its own sports car. Called simply the Coupe, the car is clearly inspired by the Porsche 356 and is promised to weigh less than 2200 pounds, with a 50-50 weight distribution. It will have a rear-mounted electric motor and a 40-kWh battery for a range of 230 miles.
There’s no word on cost yet, but the idea of a variety of nimble, light electric sports cars with coachbuilt bodies sounds pretty good.