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Details on Rolls-Royce 102EX Electric Car at Geneva Auto Show

By Automotive Staff | March 02, 2011
Rolls-Royce unveiled additional details of its 102EX electric vehicle at this month's Geneva Motor Show. The 102EX is also known as the Phantom Experimental Electric and will be used to evaluate technologies for later implementation. Rolls-Royce started with a Phantom but wanted to make sure the EE left a lasting impression. To start, 16 coats of special paint were appropriated for the exterior, though that wasn’t the most impressive fact (RR offers some 45,000 custom paint colors for their normal lineup). The final decision was to use a highly reflective paint with ceramic nano particles to give off the shine of a metallic silver. The final four coats of paint are called Atlantic Chrome, and Rolls-Royce says the paint color becomes more impressive with more light. If you ask us, Atlantic Chrome emits a blue-ish glow too. You’d expect to see the famed Spirit of Ecstasy standing on the front of the hood, and she’s all lit up here. For the 102EX, she’s made of Makrolon and sits in blue LED light, signifying this isn’t any ordinary Phantom. Normally, a 6.75-liter V-12 would generate the forward thrust to get the Phantom moving but that’s obviously not the case here. Key to the electric operation is a massive 71-kilowatt-hour lithium-ion battery housed within the aluminum spaceframe. Specifically, Rolls-Royce is using large-form NCM pouch cells, or lithium-nickel-cobalt-manganese-oxide to be exact. Due to its experimental nature, the 96 cells are separated into 5 modules (38-, 36-, 10-, 8-, and 4-cell units) and arranged in such a way that the overall battery takes on the shape of an engine and transmission. Sounds nifty. At its peak, the battery doles out 850 amperes at 338 volts to two electric motors linked to a rear transaxle. The single-speed gearbox takes each motor’s 145 kilowatts (194 horsepower) and sends up to 388 horsepower to the rear wheels. Given its electric nature, the two motors will have up 590 combined pound-feet of torque on demand. The 0-60 mph time is quoted as being under 8 seconds, and there’s a governed top speed of just under 100 mph. A 71-kilowatt-hour affords the Phantom EE an early range of up to 124 miles, but would undeniably take quite some time to charge. According to Rolls-Royce, a three-phase charger (presumably 440V) would need 8 hours, while a single-phase (presumably 220/240V) would take 20 hours. Wireless charging is being trialed as well. As is typical of Rolls-Royce, the 102EX weighs three tons, explaining the expected range versus battery capacity. The battery itself accounts for 1411 pounds, and the extreme luxury sedan is not short on interior amenities. Experimental Corinova leather adorns the seats, floor, and armrests, and is tanned with all-natural vegetable oil. The automaker took care to ensure the leather manufacturing process was sustainable and somewhat green – extracts for tanning were sourced from specific locations and the entire process produces less waste byproducts than standard chrome-tanned leather. Recycled Corinova leather could feasibly be used to aerate soil for agriculture. As expected, there was no sacrifice in sumptuous quality. Leather’s natural companion is wood, and plenty of unique grains and patterns will be presented. Even as a one-off tester, it was important to set an air of luxury. With room for 4 or 5 occupants, the 102EX/Phantom EE will eventually go on a world tour to show off its goods. It’ll provide an opportunity to gather feedback from numerous parties, and we don’t expect Rolls-Royce to make any decisions on a future EV rashly. via Rolls-Royce courtesy of Motor Trend Staff
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