China has produced the world’s fastest electric vehicle – the 1000kW and 1480Nm Nio EP9 that most shockingly has also just set a new Nurburgring lap record for an EV.
The EP9 is far removed from the Great Wall budget cars we get in Australia, featuring four electric motors, four transmissions, four-way adjustable suspension with torque vectoring all-wheel drive and a carbon monocoque chassis with carbon composite body panels some of the highlights.
Nio claim 0-100km/h in 2.7 seconds for the 1734kg electric supercar, 7.1 seconds to 198km/h, a 10.1sec quarter mile run (at 249km/h) and 300km/h in 15.9sec before a 313km/h top speed.
A braking system (with 408mm front and rear) is claimed to offer twice the brake torque capability of a GT3 car, while the three-position active rear wing, full-length underfloor diffuser and adjustable front splitter is claimed to deliver twice the downforce of an F1 car.
Emerging from a country that produced 24.5 million vehicles last year – exactly twice the number of silver-medallist US – the Nio EP9 used its monster 295mm 21-inch tyres to maximum effect in also claiming the title of fastest EV around the 20.8km Nurburgring, lapping the Green Hell in 7min 5.12sec. It has since posted the lap on its YouTube channel.
That trumps the previous record holder, the Toyota TMG EV P002 prototype racecar that in 2012 posted a 7min 22.329sec lap time. It also puts it ahead of a Nisann GT-R Nismo or Lexus LFA Nurburgring.
If a sceptical eyebrow is to be raised over such claims, consider the claimed 45-minute battery recharge time and claimed 427km range between refills – driving gently, maybe distantly, but certainly not while up it.
Although the EP9 is not a production vehicle and cannot be registered, the founder and chairman of Nio owner NextEV William Li said: “Today we launched our electric supercar that broke the record at the Nordschliefe. The Nio EP9 was born to push limits and is the first stage of automotive production for Nio.
“It is a statement of our vision and technical and manufacturing capabilities. It is a best-in-class product that showcases what is possible with electric vehicles.
“We believe that when the car ownership experience exceeds expectations, electric vehicles will become the natural choice for everyone, leading to a more sustainable tomorrow. And with that, our vision of a blue sky will come true.”