The two famous luxury sports car manufacturers have announced new electric vehicles (EVs) for the market in recent weeks
AEMO recently published analysis outlining that electrification of the transport sector could make a significant contribution to the way we consume electricity in the future. The extent of this contribution is uncertain, because uptake of EVs is still in the early stages, however the trend is being supported by two of the most luxurious brands in the market.
From Formula 1 racing to Magnum PI, the distinctive red Ferraris from Italy are synonymous with extravagance and engineering brilliance. For the latest evolution in their illustrious automotive history, Ferrari has introduced its first series production PHEV (Plug-in Hybrid Electric Vehicle) - the SF90 Stradale, the fastest and most powerful production model they’ve ever manufactured.
According to Ferrari, the SF90 Stradale is powered by a 4.0 Litre turbocharged V8 engine that generates 769 horsepower but gets another 217 horsepower from three electric motors — one powering the rear wheels and two for the front. The SF90 Stradale is also Ferrari’s first plug-in hybrid. Its extra battery power means it can drive silently in emissions-free all-electric e-Drive mode, using just the front axle.
The driver can select from one of the four power unit modes and the sophisticated control logic takes care of the rest, managing the flow of power between the V8, the electric motors and the batteries. The internal combustion engine and the electric motors work in synergy to unleash a whopping 735 kilowatts (kW) or 986 horsepower.
Not to be outdone, Ferrari’s great sports car rival from Germany, the iconic Porsche, has just unveiled their new (and first ever) fully electric vehicle, the Taycan.
According to Porsche, the Taycan is the first production vehicle with a system voltage of 800 volts as opposed to the standard 400 volts for electric cars. This is heralded as a particular advantage for Taycan drivers on the road: in just over five minutes, the battery can be recharged using direct current (DC) from the high-power charging network for a range of up to 100 kilometres.
The electric machine, transmission and pulse-controlled inverter are each combined into a compact drive module. These modules have the highest power density (kW per litre of package space) of all electric powertrains (which are the components that get the engine's power to the wheels and down to the ground) on the market today. That’s in addition to the 265kW of energy it’s able to regenerate back into the battery when the driver decelerates.
Both cars are sheer feats of engineering, but at a price point of over $1M for the Ferrari (the Australian allocation of 25 cars have already been sold out) and approximately $200,000 for the Porsche, they are also unquestionably exclusive vehicles aimed at a luxury market.
However, with more and more big brand automakers entering the electric vehicle arena (one currently dominated by Tesla with a quarter of a million vehicles sold in 2018), this level of innovation can only benefit the other end of the consumer spectrum. AEMO’s analysis forecasts nearly four and a half million residential and commercial EVs across the east-coast of Australia by 2037-38, representing approximately 17% of the total vehicle fleet, as EV technology continues to evolve and become more accessible.
*Copyright and images courtesy of Ferrari and Porsche AG
*As the system and market operator, we are fuel and technology neutral. The products, services and providers in this content are for illustrative purposes only and are not endorsed by AEMO.