Is everybody with a socket set and a torque wrench building an electric car to take on Tesla these days? It certainly seems so. Here comes another company no one has ever heard of who says it is doing precisely that.
Thunder Power is a Taiwan company that says it is bringing a groundbreaking new electric car to the Frankfurt auto show that begins September 15, according to Britain’s Auto Express. The Thunder Power claims its electric car has 430 horsepower. It goes 0-62 mph in under 5 seconds, the company says, with enough electricity in the batteries for 373 miles of driving. Top speed is said to be 155 mph.
If true, those numbers would seem to give the standard Tesla Model S a run for its money. But keep in mind that this is a company that has never been heard from before. Where the cars will be built and by whom is a mystery. Not only that, range figures have to be taken with a grain of salt these days. Numbers in the European test cycle are about 50% more than those derived using the EPA standard. Range numbers in Japan are higher still. Which format is Thunder Power using for its estimates? We don’t know.
We also know next to nothing about the car. Is it a sedan, a crossover, a minivan, or a flying car? All we have to go on is one teaser image released by the company. We will to wait until the car comes out from under its protective covering next week in Frankfurt before we can tell you anything more.
Thunder Power promises “European engineering” wrapped up in “Italian design” and says it has hired former Bugatti technician Dr Peter Tutzer to oversee the project. The car is currently undergoing testing in Milan. With a target price of around $50,000, it is supposed to go on sale in Europe in 2017.
It’s fairly easy to build a non-running, one-off prototype for the show circuit. It is quite another thing to actually put a car into production. When it comes to the Thunder Power, the best we can say is, “We’ll see….”