Paris motor show report - Saab 9-3 ePower

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Saab 93e
Saab 93e
This all-electric 9-3 Sportwagon is the star of the Saab stand at the Paris motor show. Called the ePower, it’s a prototype for a test fleet of 70 cars, which will be built and trialled in Sweden early next year.

What is it?
It’s Saab first ever electric car, and is the product of collaboration between Saab, Boston Power (for the batteries) and Electroengine in Sweden AB (for the powertrain).

Based on the BMW 3 Series-rivaling 9-3, the ePower is, erm, powered by a 181bhp electric motor, which drives the front wheels through a single-speed gearbox.

Instant maximum torque means a 0-62mph time of just 8.5 seconds, and top speed is a respectable 93mph.

How far can it go?
The ePower has a projected range of around 124 miles, which is pretty impressive by today’s EV standards. Key to the longer range are the battery cells, which have an unusually high storage density.

Another reason is the use of air – rather then liquid – cooling. This contributes to lower cost and also saves weight.

The battery pack is designed to support recharge cycles equivalent to that of 10 years’ use. It can be fully recharged from a domestic mains supply in six hours.

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