Powerelectronics 381 Inizio 0

Another electric supercar: Meet the Inizio

Nov. 4, 2010
It will hit 170 mph and go for 200 miles on a charge.

First there was the Tesla roadster, now comes the Inizio.

Li-ion Motors in North Carolina recently debuted the Inizio, billed as the world’s first all American-made, fully-electric, emission-free “super car.” The car carries the firm's patent-pending lithium-ion battery technology and management system, giving it a range of up to 250 miles (321 km) and a top-speed of 170 mph (272 km/h). The car is expected to cost $139,000 when it hits the market next year.

The low-profile, two-seater Inizio is designed to accommodate passengers up to 7-ft tall. (Shaquille O'Neal, you are out of luck, but LeBron James, take note.) The exterior of the car is characterized by smooth and rounded edges, high-intensity halogen headlights, a removable hard top, and an optional moveable back wing. Each Inizio is custom-built.

Doors rotate up on a 90-degree angle, and the custom hydraulic lift system raises the car three inches to allow more easy access to the interior. The passenger compartment is decked out in leather and suede Recaro seating. As you might expect, an entertainment system is standard that includes a 5.0 digital surround sound system (with 12-in. subwoofer), GPS navigation, and video monitor with DVD player, audio/video and mp3 input.
Battery power output exceeds 40 kW-hr (upgrade to 96.7 kW-hr available), while its electric motor delivers 145 kW. And there is an optional extreme-performance motor package that lets the car go from zero-to-sixty in 3.4 seconds.

The builder says drivers can expect to see a range of up to 250 miles through use of regenerative braking system on one full charge. Owners can expect a battery life of 2,500+ full charges. But it takes eight hours to get a full charge on a 220-V outlet.

The car's battery management system (BMS) communicates with the Li-ion Motors data center to implement remote diagnostics. If something goes sour in the power train, the system notifies both Li-ion Motors and the driver well in advance of being stuck on the side of the highway. The dash-mounted LCD touch screen monitor displays the car's remaining power and guides the driver to a selection of nearby charging stations. It also monitors and displays battery temperature, power consumption, drive time and distance driven.

Finally, side and rear-view mirrors are coupled with high-definition cameras to give drivers a 360-degree view of space around the car.

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