Detroit Electric continues to promise that it really is making the totally-not-Tesla-Roadster-inspired SP:01. It's not doing it in Detroit, as promised. And it hasn't arrived in 2014, as promised. But it's coming. Really. They swear.
The latest chapter in the long, arduous saga of Detroit Electric is the announcement of drivetrain and the final exterior and interior design.
Detroit Electric is claiming that the electric motor puts out 285 HP and will come equipped with a manual gearbox as standard with a choice of two optional automatics: a single-speed or twin-speed.
The styling has evolved since its debut at the Shanghai Motor Show in 2013. The aerodynamics are supposedly better, and from what we can tell, that means leaving most of the bodywork from the donor Lotus Elise intact. But the rear gets a new fastback design, a new rear wing, and a reworked diffuser. The company is promising a raft of styling options including carbon fiber spoilers and battery covers, wheels, and a few paint choices.
Inside, it's more reworked Elise, but with the addition of some leather and alcantra, along with an 8.4-inch touchscreen running Android, er, SAMI, it's Smartphone Application Managed Infotainment system. That controls all the usual stuff, along with HVAC, telematics, charging systems, and third party apps.
It all looks very nice, which is easy when you've got good stuff to start with, and Detroit Electric says it's been testing the latest variant at its facility in Leamington Spa in the UK before production begins "in early 2015."
But a few things stand out in Detroit Electric's latest update. First, the dateline continues to come from "Detroit, USA" despite every media contact having a +44 phone number. Secondly, there's no talk of range or battery capacity, which was originally pegged at 190 miles and 37 kWh, respectively. And finally, despite a headline that reads, "EXTERIOR DESIGN, PRICING AND SPECIFICATION ANNOUNCED FOR DETROIT ELECTRIC SP:01 ELECTRIC SPORTS CAR", there is no mention of pricing information, although last we heard, it was going to be $135,000. Oh, and it's amended the line about being the world's fastest pure-electric production car to "the world's fastest pure-electric production two-seater sports car".