Meet Gordon Murray's new baby

By Motoring Staff Time of article published Sep 22, 2011

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Little has been heard from South African Formula One designer turned green-car guru Gordon Murray for the past nine months, and now we know why; this is what he's been working on.

It's a prototype electric sports car commissioned by carbon-fibre specialist Toray Industries, called the Teeway AR.1 and yes, it's a runner - designed, tooled and built in just nine months under the Gordon Murray Design code-name T.32.

The two-seat roadster has a monocoque chassis that's made using a Toray component system with a process time of less than 10 minutes. The battery and electric motor are off-the-shelf components, borrowed from the Mitsubishi iMiEV, but with special electrical control units developed by Murray.

The AR.1 weighs only 850kg (including the 240kg battery) - that's about the same as a Lotus Elise and 400kg lighter than a Tesla. Performance is limited by an output figure of only 47kw but 180Nm of torque, available from a standing start, gives it lively acceleration.

Murray quotes 0-100km/h in 11.4 seconds and a top speed of 147km/h; more importantly, he says the 16kWh lithium-ion battery gives it a range of 180km (driven gently!) and can be recharged from a domestic 220V socket in six hours.

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