The Morgan Motor Company brought its Plus E electric roadster to the Geneva Motor Show, hoping to gauge public interest to the concept car. If there is strong demand from customers, Morgan may put the Plus E into series production.
The Morgan Plus E rides on the aluminum chassis that underpins the company’s other sports cars, and wears the same sheetmetal as the Plus 8 roadster. The chassis was modified by U.K. company Radshape in order to accommodate the car’s lithium-ion battery pack. An electric motor, sourced from British company Zytek Automotive, is mounted in the transmission tunnel, providing 94 hp and 221 lb-ft of torque.Zytek also provides the electric motor used in the Smart Fortwo Electric Drive.
Unlike most electric cars, which use a single-speed transmission, the Morgan will have a traditional five-speed manual gearbox. The car still has a clutch pedal, but Morgan notes that the low-end torque characteristics of an electric motor means the clutch is only necessary for changing gear, not for pulling away from a stop. Having a multi-speed transmission is meant to improve performance and range for the electric car.
“We wanted to see how much fun you can have in an electric sportscar, so we have built one to help us find out,” Morgan operations director Steve Morris said in a statement. “It will be a fantastic car to drive.”
Morgan will build two concept versions of the Plus E. The first, pictured here, will use lithium-ion batteries and a five-speed manual transmission. The second version will use “alternative battery technologies” and an automated-manual transmission.
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