Over two years since the reveal of the Mark Zero concept, Swiss startup Piëch has begun development of the production variant
Two and a half years after the debut of the Piëch Mark Zero at the 2019 Geneva motor show, the Swiss EV car company has confirmed it is now on track to deliver a production variant in 2024, entering the introducing it as the first bespoke car under that most auspicious of automotive names.
This confirmation comes after a lengthy period of silence, yet the company is confident, having begun prototype engineering, that it will arrive ready for customers from mid-2024 as the first of three iterations. Company co-founder and CEO, and son of the late former Porsche engineer and VW boss Ferdinand Piëch, Toni Piëch said: ‘Despite the global COVID-19 pandemic, we have managed to overcome the resulting delays and keep our project fully on track. The financing rounds to date have been successful, and we can now confidently continue our journey towards market launch.’
Like the concept, the production model will utilise a trio of 150kW motors, one mounted on the front axle and two at the rear, for a total output of 450kW (595bhp). Though we’ll have to sit tight for final figures, Piëch now claims it will achieve even quicker acceleration, sprinting from standstill to 100kph in under 3sec and to 200kph in under 9sec. Top speed is yet to be confirmed.
In terms of charging, while it’s not quite the times quoted for the concept, the GT is said to replenish 80 per cent capacity in just eight minutes with a 400-volt CCS2 fast charge station. A unique pouch cell battery pack provides a total capacity of 75kWh, allowing for a WLTP-certified 500-kilometer range.
Range and charging speed aren’t the only focus, though, with heat and weight management also on the agenda. The pouch cell design is said to improve heat management to allow for both faster charging and more consistent power delivery during high load driving sessions. Like all EVs weight is an issue, and at 1800kg its target weight is heavy, but with one portion of cells housed in the ‘transmission’ tunnel and a second portion over the rear axle, Piëch aims to replicate the weight distribution and low seating position of a combustion vehicle – this is something that models such as the Lotus Evija have also aimed to achieve.
In 2019, Klaus Schmidt, head of engineering at Piëch Automotive, said: ‘Besides the short charging time, the innovative thermal management of the batteries also gives them the highest level of stability, and fast laps on the Nürburgring Nordschleife should not be a problem…’
Set to launch as early as 2024, the GT will be the first model in a three-car line-up, with a four-seat GT and SUV to follow. Though testing is only just getting underway, the firm says its second prototype will hit the road in March 2022 with a handful more to follow next year. Specifics haven’t been announced, but Piëch says it will produce its models ‘at the facilities of a renowned automobile manufacturer’, targeting a volume of 1200 vehicles in the first year.
This article originally appeared at evo.co.uk
Copyright © evo UK, Autovia Publishing