Despite losing its CEO, Pininfarina continues forward with its sublime Sintesi concept which is moving into its prototype stage. This time, we have more news around it before it is set to appear at the Paris Motor Show.
The gist, first a picture of this beautiful concept.
It’s simply beautiful from all angles.
What is it? Designed in conjunction with French battery company Bollore, already mentioned here, with its BlueCar, now prototype and English website link available here. Bollore has done a lot of work on ultracapacitors, already mentioned here. Pininifarina says it will be available in Europe, Japan and America by the end of 2010. Our first question is, how and what will be the final design. Car manufacturers have a tendency to show us great prototypes but their final versions are usually pretty watered down. Nonetheless, Pininfarina and Bollore say they will build 2,000 cars in 2010, 8,000 by 2011, and finally 15,000 by 2014, according to Wired.
The technology behind. Unlike current EV’s and plug-in hybrids, PHEV that use nickel-metal hydride as in the case of the Toyota Prius or lithium-ion batteries, such as the Tesla Roadster, the Sintesi will use a lithium-metal-polymer battery developed by Bollore. These types of batteries are more efficient because each cell is encased in steel and electronically monitored to keep it operating at maximum capacity, regulating voltage and keeping the temperature under check. Think of it as the new generation of more efficient lithium batteries.
The numbers, while the top speed is “only” 80 mph, plenty for normal highway use, it will achieve 0 to 31 mph in 4.9 seconds. The range should be around 125 miles that can provided by a 8 hour charge from a standard electric plug and 5 minutes will give you around 15 miles. Now the impressive number is that the battery will have a lifespan of 125,000 miles. That last number should be enough to hush the naysayers with batteries good for 125,000 miles.
So what is special about this vehicle? For one thing, it isn’t a mainstream auto maker concept. Mainstream makers have good cars but left fielders can also bring great products to the table with fresh new designs. Think Tesla, Lightening GT, Eliica. It also shows two points, a welcome addition to traditional crop of mass produced cars and that research into new technology is proving to push the limits well beyond what we thought were possible… unless it was just a few who didn’t want to rock the cradle.