There might not be a larger void between two automakers than the British brands Lotus and Rolls-Royce. One focuses on bare-bones sports cars, while the other epitomizes excessive luxury. But when Rolls-Royce decided to push ahead with plans to create an electric car concept, it went straight to the engineering minds at Lotus.
On display at the Geneva Auto Show, the Rolls-Royce 102EX, or Experimental Electric, utilizes Lotus technology, although the results are rather underwhelming. Rolls-Royce is using this car to see if there’s a market for an electric version of its super luxury saloon, but with a 0-62 mph time of “under eight seconds,” it’s hard to be impressed – especially when the standard V12-powered car does it in just 5.7 seconds. The reason for the more sedate acceleration might be that the two electric motors, which combine to make 290 kW and 590 lb-ft of torque, are powered by a lithium-ion battery pack that weighs, wait for it… 1,411 lbs.
Rolls will take the 102EX on a world-wide tour this year to gauge interest from potential customers. If they don’t ship it, however, it might just take all year to drive around the world with a range of 124 miles between charges.