It was supposed to have gone on sale last August after its premiere in Shanghai, but now the Detroit Electric SP:01 is said to be finally close to its market debut. The car is reportedly undergoing final dynamic evaluation in Europe ahead of its introduction in several world markets.
The company says that the latest version of the two-seater all-electric sports car has seen additional development work carried out on it since its show introduction in pre-production form.
At that stage, the rear-wheel drive SP:01 – which is based on a modified Lotus Elise – featured a powertrain made up of a compact, mid-mounted 201 hp and 225 Nm electric motor, juiced by a lightweight, purpose-designed 37kWh battery pack.
Performance specs included a 0-100 km/h time of 3.7 seconds and 249 km/h top speed as well as a 305 km operating range. It’s not known if anything along that front has changed, or if the 1,067 kg kerb weight touted then has been revised. Series production was due to be a limited run of 999 vehicles, built at DE’s production facility in Wayne County, Michigan.
Back in 2008, the company announced that it was looking to work with Proton to manufacture EVs. It signed a supply and manufacturing agreement with Proton in March 2009, where it was to buy the Persona and GEN2 and replace the CamPro engine with an electric motor drivetrain, rebadging the cars as the DE e63 and e46. The project, however, never took off.
Later that year, it signed a deal with Chinese automaker Dongfeng to use its battery-electric drivetrain technology for the latter’s models, but things fell silent after the announcement.