Published on August 15th, 2014 | by Christopher DeMorro
Electric Renovo Coupe Is An EV Performance Revolution
Built in secret for the past four years, the Renovo Coupe has put a revolutionary electric drivetrain in a classic Shelby Daytona Coupe body. It’s the perfect blend of old-meets-new, taking a timeless classic car and installing a cutting-edge electric drivetrain that focuses on spirited performance driving.
The two men behind this electric supercar are Renovo CEO Christopher Heiser and CTO Jason Stinson, and what they’ve done is focus in developing an electric drivetrain that can handle the rigors of performance racing. And that’s what they built, taking an $89,000 Shelby Daytona CSX9000 chassis, and fitting it with a 30 kWh lithium-ion battery pack that is both lightweight, and tolerant to the high temperatures that limit the performance of cars like the Tesla Model S on the race track. Renovo has also fitted its electric coupe with on-the-fly regenerative feedback adjustment, depending on what the situation calls for.
The Renovo Coupe is fitted with a pair of twin sequential electric motors spinning out a combined 500 horsepower and 1,000 lb-ft of torque to the rear wheels. At a claimed curb weight of just 3,250 pounds, that’s a whole lotta oomph in a lightweight package, allowing the Renovo to sprint from 0 to 60 MPH in about 3.4 seconds. 14-inch cross-drilled front rotors are matched with six piston calipers, while at the rear are 13.4 inch rotors and four-piston calipers.
The limiting factor here though is range, rated at just 100 miles per charge. That was done intentionally though, as Renovo is emphasizing its enterprising EV as a lightweight track car with a focus on fast-charging. More range would have meant a heftier car, hurting performance more than it helped, so instead the Renovo team focused on fast charging. A standard Level 2 charger will top off the battery pack in about 5 hours, but the Renovo Coupe can also hook up to Level 3 chargers that will fill it up in just 30 minutes, without harming battery life or performance.
Along with patent-pending high heat tolerance, the ability to recharge and discharge rapidly is key to Renovo’s marketing strategy. Limited sales begin in California early next year, and pricing is set at $529,000. With a $90,000 Shelby Daytona Coupe body as the starting point, and custom everything-else throughout, including a modified interior with all new gauges, it certainly isn’t for the average Starbucks-drinking environmentalist. No, this is an electric supercar for the Kopi Luwak crowd.
This could be the battery revolution EVs have been waiting for, and reshape what the industry thinks electric cars are capable of. Or maybe its just another boutique, flash-in-the-pan EV. Let us know your thoughts in the comments below.