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A year ago in Geneva, NLV Solar and Swedish supercar builder Christian von Koenigsegg turned up with a four-seat electric car that incorporated photovoltaic energy collectors in the body surface. At that time, it was nothing more than a styling buck. Next week, again in Geneva, NLV will be back to provide an update on the Quant (this time without Koenigsegg). The company is now planning to have a running prototype of the Quant on the road later this year with a production-certified machine by 2012.

The Quant is planned to be the first production car with a four-seat carbon fiber chassis and a body entirely covered in a thin solar film. Propulsion will come by way of a quartet of 150 kilowatt electric motors. We'll be looking for more details next week.

[Source: NLV Quant]

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    • 1 Second Ago
      • 5 Years Ago
      "a quartet of 150 kilowatt electric motors"

      I'm guessing they are in-wheel motors? I thought the big disadvantage in this application was the massive amount of unsprung weight. I would think that with all the carbon fiber and other work in making the vehicle light weight, they would be better suited to using a two motor setup.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I could see having four motors. As long as they are centrally mounted on the axle line.

        With one motor per axle, you still have to have a differential. With two motors, perhaps even two windings sharing an encasement... perhaps with a sprag clutch lock-up, or something... differential action, torque-vectoring, regenerative braking, and all is handled by having a separate motor per wheel.

        With some thermal management, which large electric motors would need anyway, even a friction and electrical resistance hybrid braking system could be incorporated, making the outboard hubs all the simpler.

        interesting stuff...

        But you still have to generate and store the electricity, and there is where the problem always is. Batteries are inherently less energy dense than fuel, and the electricity is still subject to wasteful loss when transmitted, and lithium and other battery chemicals are extremely unfriendly.

        I still think a multi-fuel turboshaft engine and generator/starter combination, and a minimum appropriate amount of on-board capacitance (new-tech batteries, capacitors, whatever works the best...)

        Or maybe further development of BloomBox fuel cell technology, or some other good, efficient way to turn on-board fuel into electricity sufficient to supply the entire car, including the electric drive motors, until the fuel supply is exhausted, is the way to go. Batteries take too long to charge, deplete too readily, and are too risky to use as the sole large energy storage device on the car.

        Organic chemistry is pretty much the best inherent energy storage medium on this planet. petrochemicals are part of organic chemistry. Even if synthetic processing of biomass has to take over some fuel production... it is still far more concise and stable than generating electricity, and transmitting, and storing it.

        Aside from that, being afraid of CO2 output is like being afraid of oxygen, and it makes no logical sense. Half of the ecosystem of this planet depends on CO2, and it uses it to aspirate O2 that OUR half needs. Anyone who says that CO2 is a pollutant is selling you a bill of goods on a platter of self-imposed fictional, unfounded, and frankly impossible guilt.
        • 5 Years Ago
        I agree. A two motor setup or just one motor would be fine. All that extra weight is not worth it.
      • 1 Year Ago
      another FAILURE!!!!
      • 5 Years Ago
      I hate seeing all these cars and knowing more then likely it'll never happen
        • 5 Years Ago
        the research and development has to start somewhere. We may never see this car but its advances will push forward the entire industry. One day we will see vehicle that are a direct result of this cars advances and progress.
        • 5 Years Ago

        translation: If we ever do see it, it'll be a watered down version