Ariel is mostly known for the lightweight Atom and more recently the unpaved road-ready Nomad, but it’s also been working on an electric halo model for the last few years. Now it has finally revealed this model and there’s a lot to talk about, not only in terms of its propulsion, but also the way it looks and just some of its crazy specs.
Called the Ariel Hipercar, it has four electric motors (one for each wheel) that together produce 1,180 horsepower / 1,342 pound-foot (1,820 Nm) and hurl this lightweight coupe to sixty in under 2 seconds and 100 mph (161 km/h) in around 4 seconds - top speed will be 155 mph (250 km/h). Interestingly, Ariel says that the vehicle’s current weight of 1,759 kg (3,877 pounds) is too high and that for the finished production version it wants to get it down to 1,499 kg (3,305 pounds).
Gallery: Ariel Hipercar
The company is known for having a strong focus on keeping the weight of its vehicles down, and it says that with the use of carbon fiber in the vehicle’s tub and body panels, it can achieve the aforementioned weight. The Hipercar will still be noticeably heavier than Ariel’s most famous product, the Atom, which weighs from just 612 kg (1,349 pounds).
It draws power from a fairly small 56 kWh battery pack, but the vehicle actually has an on-board range extender in the form of a jet engine that never actually drives the wheels. Apparently, this is the first automotive use of a jet engine, although it doesn’t need to be particularly powerful to produce power - it only has 47 horsepower, but that’s enough to boost the 150 miles (240 km) that the vehicle can travel just on battery power alone.
Ariel is still working on the vehicle, so its specs aren’t exactly final, but the vehicle is in an advanced stage of development, so they are not expected to change too much. You will be able to order one with just rear motors and rear-wheel drive, and the turbine range extender will also be optional, but the vehicle is expected to cost around $1-million and debut in 2024.