Caterham: the electric Seven will be the first electric vehicle in history, scheduled for 2023 Car News

Caterham is working to protect the future of the Seven in the face of impending homologation and legislative hurdles – and is set to launch its first historic electric vehicle in the years to come.

The British specialty brand was recently acquired by retail group VT Holdings, a division of which is the largest importer of Caterham cars into the Japanese market.

CEO Kazuho Takahashi has brought some 25 years of top motorsport experience, and Caterham CEO Graham Macdonald is convinced he is committed to the survival of the brand.

“He loves the brand and he knows we don’t have endless money pits,” Macdonald said. “However, he is determined to see this brand continue for another 50 years.”

Basically, the acquisition will provide funding and security as Caterham prepares to launch a zero-emission version of the Seven.

Macdonald said the priority is to make any electric version of the tiny two-seater “ride and behave like a Caterham.”

To this end, the “EV Seven” will be developed with an emphasis on weight maintenance in an effort to preserve the agility and pace of the model brand.

The geometry of the suspension and other aspects of the chassis will be recalibrated to mitigate the added weight of the battery and electric motors, for example, and it will go without the heavy associated systems that are common on traditional electric vehicles, such as the regenerative braking.

In line with the reduction in curb weight, the EV will remain fundamentally basic and is very likely to maintain the traditionally minimal open-wheel silhouette of the Seven.

A decision has yet to be made as to whether the EV Seven will be “bigger, heavier, and more comfortable to sit on” than current variants or closely related to its concept, but Macdonald said the latter is more likely.

Acceleration will be about the same as the 620R, today’s highest level, which can go from rest to 60 mph in just 2.79 seconds.

Macdonald has previously driven a prototype version of an electric Seven. He said: “It looks a lot like a go-kart – it’s two-pedal, you have quick acceleration and it’s a different product to drive. No less exciting, but exciting in a different way.

Before putting the EV Seven into production, however, Caterham is looking to sign a partnership agreement with another manufacturer to secure a supply of batteries and engines, similar to how it uses Ford-derived engines in its models. current production.

Macdonald has been quiet about which companies Caterham might partner with, but confirmed he won’t be looking for a complete, out-of-the-box architecture.

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This notice was published: 2021-05-12 23:01:25