The company’s first production EV

The Aston Martin RapidE is an upcoming electric car based on the familiar Rapide sedan. The company’s first electric car, the RapidE will be built in limited numbers in 2019 and feature a brand-new drivetrain consisting of a large battery pack and two electric motors.

Previewed by a concept car shown all the way back in 2015, the RapidE will share most of its exterior and interior design with the gasoline-powered sedan. Power, however, will come from an innovative battery and a couple of electric motors capable of more than 600 horsepower. Aimed at the Tesla Model S, the RapidE will deliver more than 200 miles of range per charge and sports car-like performance. Most details are still under wraps, but we put together a speculative review with what we know so far.

Continue reading to learn more about the Aston Martin RapidE.

Exterior

- * Similar to the gasoline model
- * Blue-dotted graphics
- * "E" badging
- * Unique, aerodynamic wheels
- * AMR features?

2020 Aston Martin RapidE (EV) High Resolution Exterior
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The RapidE’s exterior design remains a mystery, but Aston Martin did release a teaser photo showing a blue "E" badge on the front fender, blue-dotted graphics on the side skirts, and new wheels. The rims look particularly interesting thanks to their thin holes. The design was likely made following wind-tunnel testing, as they look like wheels seen on cars developed for speed records on the Bonneville Salt Flats.

But despite the lack of official images, the RapidE might not be such a big mystery.

Chances are the production model will be similar to the concept car that Aston Martin unveiled in 2015, which was almost identical to the regular Rapide.

The concept also featured blue badges and blue-dotted graphics, but other than that, it was identical to the gasoline-powered sedan.

Of course, the Brits could use a few tricks to set it apart, one of them being the bespoke wheels. But the RapidE could also have revised bumpers and a new diffuser. Actually, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the RapidE take some inspiration from the more aggressive looking AMR model. All told, the Rapide is already eight years old as of 2018, and Aston Martin needs to do something to keep it fresh a while longer.

Interior

- * Based on regular Rapide
- * Luxury features
- * A bit dated tech-wise
- * New EV-specific features

2014 - 2015 Aston Martin Rapide S Interior
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There are no hints as to what we will find inside the RapidE, but if the exterior is any indication, the cabin should also come from the regular Rapide.

Luckily, the sedan’s interior isn’t as dated. Sure, it lacks a proper infotainment screen in the center stack, and the instrument cluster needs a similar update, but it remains competitive when it comes to luxury and convenience features. So expect the same leather-wrapped surfaces, Alcantara inserts, Aluminum trim, and optional carbon-fiber.

A few EV-specific features should be added though, like an extra display in the instrument cluster for data like battery consumption and charging, range, regeneration and so on. Should Aston Martin also update the infotainment system, it should include some EV-specific apps and menus.

Drivetrain & Performance

- * 800-volt battery
- * Two electric motors
- * 602 horsepower
- * Sports car-like performance
- * More than 200 miles of range

2020 Aston Martin RapidE (EV)
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Fortunately, we know a lot more about the drivetrain since Aston Martin has already unveiled some details. For starters, we know that the powertrain was developed by Williams Advanced Engineering.

The 65-kWh battery is rather innovative, mostly because it's an 800-volt system.

Aston Martin claims it will be an industry-first feature by the time the RapidE arrives in 2019.

The battery feeds a pair of electric motors that spin both axles. Together they produce an impressive 602 horsepower, which is on par with most versions of the Tesla Model S. Aston Martin says it targets a range of more than 200 miles on a single charge, but actual figures aren’t yet available.

2020 Aston Martin RapidE (EV) High Resolution Drivetrain
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Performance-wise, Aston Martin says it wants the RapidE to have "the ability to have usable performance for laps at the Nurburgring," so we can expect something similar to the Model S, like 0 to 60 mph sprints in less than four seconds.

The projected top speed is at 155 mph, the industry standard for performance-oriented gasoline cars.

As for the battery, Aston Martin mentioned that it will take about an hour to charge from zero to a range of about 185 miles using a 400-volt (50 kW) charger. With an 800-volt outlet (100 kW) charging for an hour will give a bigger range.

Pricing

2020 Aston Martin RapidE (EV) High Resolution Exterior
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Pricing information is not yet available, but there’s a good chance that the EV version will cost more than the regular sedan. This means that the RapidE could start from anywhere between $220,000 and $250,000. This isn’t exactly expensive for Aston Martin buyers, but it’s significantly more than the Tesla Model S. The American sedan starts from $65,200, while the range-topping version, which is notably quicker and returns more than 300 miles per charge, retails from $123,200.

The RapidE will be strictly limited, at least at first, with only 155 units set to be built by the end of 2019.

Competition

Tesla Model S

2017 Tesla Model S Exterior
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Speaking of the more affordable Model S, it’s the RapidE’s main threat on the market. Not only cheaper, but it also offers better range and performance and benefits from a big charger network in the United States and some European countries. What’s more, it’s significantly more popular, outselling a big number of gasoline-powered premium cars. In Norway, for instance, it’s the best-selling car overall, moving more units per year than the Volkswagen Golf. Originally available with a wide range of battery packs, the Model is now sold with a choice of three drivetrains, all AWD. The base model, called the 75D, has a 75 kWh battery under the skin. It needs only 4.2 seconds to hit 60 mph, to go with a top speed of 140 mph. Its range is rated at 259 miles. Next up is the 100D, fitted with a 100 kWh battery. This sedan hits 60 mph in 4.1 seconds, while its top speed is a bit higher at 155 mph. This model offers the best range at 335 miles per charge. Finally, there’s the insane P100D and its Ludicrous package. In this car, you’ll hit 60 mph in a mind-boggling 2.5 seconds on your way to a top speed limited to 155 mph. Range drops a bit compared to the 100D at 315 miles. Pricing varies between $68,500 and $123,200 before incentives, which makes the Model S the most affordable choice.

Read our full review on the 2017 Tesla Model S.

Final Thoughts

2020 Aston Martin RapidE (EV) High Resolution Exterior
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Although the RapidE is based on a somewhat dated design, it’s a big step forward for Aston Martin, which will finally enter the small but growing electric car market. Given the competition, and especially the Tesla Model S, it’s pretty obvious that Aston Martin needs a better car, but I think the British firm has a solid strategy behind the RapidE. This sedan, limited to only 155 units, was probably designed as an introductory car for Aston Martin to the EV market, with a much more advanced vehicle to follow. The Brits probably want customers to see that Aston Martin is capable of making a reliable, efficient electric car before a more complex, stand-alone model is brought on the market. Whether this strategy is good or not remains to be seen and depends on the final performance figures of the RapidE.

  • Leave it
    • Limited production run
    • Very expensive
    • Looks too much like the regular Rapide

Further reading

2020 Aston Martin RapidE (EV)
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Read our full review on the 2016 Aston Martin RapidE.

2014 - 2015 Aston Martin Rapide S High Resolution Exterior Wallpaper quality
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Read our full review on the 2017 Aston Martin Rapide.

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