SHANGHAI: After much teasing, Chinese carmaker Qoros's first super EV is a conceptual reality, and even if it were to be judged purely on design approach rather than in terms of capabilities and battery range, the K-EV Concept does not disappoint.
While other firms are looking to make their cars as slippery and smooth as possible to reduce air resistance and improve efficiency, Qoros appears to have looked at all of the era-defining automotive design trends of the 20th century instead and plumped for two avant-garde approaches from the 1970s and 1990s.
Whether intentionally or not, the car pays homage to Marcello Gandini's "paper cut" style that gave cars like the Lamborghini Countach and the Lotus Esprit their startling aesthetics, and then for good measure, added a dose of Chris Bangle - the man that revolutionised the visual personality of BMW in the 1990s - in the form of asymmetric doors. Those on the driver's side are gullwing while on the passenger's side, both doors slide open.
But don't think this car is in any way a throwback. Built mostly from carbon fiber and with a luxury cabin as good as that in any current generation premium car, the K-EV Concept is positioned to compete in terms of quality, aesthetics and performance against everything from the Tesla Model S to whatever Porsche has planned for its first fully electric GT car.
Capable of hitting 100kph in 2.6 seconds, of covering 500km between charges and of allowing owners to recharge the battery via cable-free induction plates as well as via a traditional plug-in charging station, the car promises to be just as exciting and confidence-inspiring to drive in the bends as in a straight line.
It has four electric motors - one at each wheel for precise torque vectoring (i.e., sending more power to an individual wheel when more grip is needed) - that offer a combined output of 858bhp, which is comfortably more than a Dodge Demon. In fact, the only thing subdued about the car, developed in partnership with Koenigsegg is its top speed. This is capped at 260kph in order to preserve battery range.
"Qoros is committed to deliver world-class quality products that offer innovative and premium customer experience," said company CEO Dr Leon Liu.
"The stronger than ever product display at the Shanghai Auto Show demonstrates our commitment to the auto market and our strong capability to provide the customers with future oriented new products."
As for the likelihood of this concept becoming a reality, Qoros says that a production version will be here within the next two years.
Qoros has a unique angle on the electric sportscar of the future