Report: Don’t Expect to see a Plug-In Hybrid from Aston Martin Anytime Soon
We could see an electric sports car soonby Kirby Garlitos, on
Aston Martin CEO Andy Palmer has steered the British automaker into prosperous waters on the back of an aggressive push to become a bigger player in the premium car market. The company has so far pushed the right buttons, but just because Aston’s fortunes are rolling at the moment, it doesn’t mean the company’s going to enter segments that it has no plans of going into. One of those segments is the plug-in hybrid sect, and if Palmer is to be believed, plug-in hybrid Aston Martins are not included in the company’s plans.
plug-in hybrid Aston Martins are not included in the company's plans.
“I don’t see the point.” That, in a nutshell, is how Palmer feels about plug-in hybrids.
In his mind, there are better and more important technologies that Aston Martin can pursue instead of pursuing something that’s not going to give Aston Martin significant headway in the segment. “You have the complexity and costs of a regular engine, and the complexity and costs of a plug-in electrified system,” Palmer said in a conversation with Auto Express. “I’d rather spend my engineering dollar on going to what, after all, will be the final goal: pure-electric vehicles.”
Palmer did admit that the company is developing a mild hybrid system that could allow Aston Martin to bring back six-cylinder engines, something it hasn’t done since the DB7 went out of production in 2004. A hybrid V-6 is a possibility, in large part because there’d be room to have one in the portfolio to join the rank of V-12 and V-8 models that the company has today. “There’d be the V12 and the V8, so there could be a sporty mid-sized engine – for a future, lighter Vantage, for example,” he said. “A hybridized V6 could work with that, but using the system as KERS and for performance, of course.”
Palmer hasn’t officially gone all-in on an EV sports car, but it is looking into the possibility of developing one that could rival Tesla’s new Roadster
The absence of a plug-in hybrid model in Aston Martin’s lineup is inconsequential compared to the lightweight, all-electric sports car the company is planning for. Palmer hasn’t officially gone all-in on an EV sports car, but it is looking into the possibility of developing one that could rival Tesla’s new Roadster, a car that Elon Musk promised would be the fastest-accelerating car in the world.
Part of that challenge lies in Aston’s ability to create the components necessary to build an electric car that can live up to the company’s stature. Whether it’s the battery, the management system, or other key components like weight, aero drag, and rolling resistance, Aston Martin will need to figure out how to marry all these elements into one all-electric package. Should it get to that point, we could be looking at Aston Martin as a real threat to Tesla’s dominance in the EV segment.
But don’t expect the EV sports car to hit the scene just yet. The car is unlikely to be launched until the early part of the next decade, or at least until the automaker is in the last stages of its “Second Century Plan” that calls for a new model to arrive every year through 2022.
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