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Car and Driver: It’s On Like Elon: Porsche’s Mission E Electric Sedan Headed to Production

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Porsche Mission E concept

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In Stuttgart this morning, Porsche board members were heard chanting “Down mit Tesla!” from a launch-controlled parade of 911 Turbos. Okay, that didn’t happen, but they’re no doubt thinking of taking it to Elon Musk’s company after they approved the Mission E concept, the stunning all-electric sedan unveiled earlier this year, for production as the company’s first-ever EV.

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Deputy chairman and labor leader Uwe Hück actually did come out and say, “A day to celebrate! Yes, we did it!” to applaud Porsche’s €700-million ($765-million) investment and plans to hire more than 1000 new employees. Everything is expanding. Over the next five years, Porsche will build a separate paint shop and a new assembly plant, enlarge the Weissach testing site, and upgrade its body shop and engine plant (that means hand-built Porsche electric motors). The planned debut is for the “end of the decade.”

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Porsche Mission E concept

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While the concept name may not stick, Porsche is indeed on a mission to outdo Tesla, which still builds the industry’s only high-performance pure EV. The Panamera and Cayenne E-Hybrid aren’t enough and the 918 Spyder was too much for too few, but those lessons—along with powertrain advances gleaned from Porsche’s winning 919 Hybrid race car—will give the Mission E momentum out of the gate. That’s assuming the Volkswagen Group’s diesel emissions scandal doesn’t siphon or delay the project in some unforeseen way. For now, nothing is short-circuiting this car or its (likely) derivative models.

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The concept car’s 800-volt charger can refill a spent battery to 80 percent (or 250 miles) in 15 minutes, allowing for a total of 310 miles, even though such an electrical connection doesn’t yet exist. Leave it to Porsche to figure that out, and if all goes to plan, the car could boast 600 horsepower, a 0-to-62-mph time of less than 3.5 seconds, four-wheel steering, all-wheel drive, and all manner of technological gadgets like an eye-tracking digital instrument panel.

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Technically, a production-based Mission E will be the first EV branded under the Porsche crest, but not the very first one designed by a Porsche. Before founding the company in 1931, Ferdinand Porsche designed his own electric powertrain while working with Austrian coachbuilder Lohner, and in 1899 unveiled the Egger-Lohner C.2 with a 50-mile range and an overboost function. Porsche engraved “P1″ on the parts to signify his first car, and two years later, he built electric hub motors on two more Lohner prototypes, including the world’s first all-wheel-drive car and gas-electric hybrid. Five Lohner-Porsche Mixte hybrids were sold by 1901. Don’t underestimate Porsche in 2020.

-UCoUSbZwBTs

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that is looking nice.

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Can't stand those wheels

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