MemberAugust 26, 2021 at 10:13 am
The top speed for the Aptera is electronically limited to 110 mph. Given the rapid acceleration, Rousch suspension and exceptional, industry leading aerodynamics, it seems the 110 mph, while certainly adequate for road use, is probably quite a bit limited from its true potential.
It may be so far below its potential top speed as to challenge folks to defeat the limiting.
I think that 125 mph top speed would be just high enough to blunt the incentive to boost that ‘setting’ …. unless there are other reasons.
For instance, the first ‘aerodynamic’ NASCAR stock car was the ’60-70 Dodge Charger needed that big ‘wing’ airfoil on the back of the racer to keep it on the track.
Nathan Armstrong said that the Aptera became ‘more efficient’ the faster it runs, suggesting that the it may take fewer KW/mile to run 125 miles in an hour than 110 miles in an hour. That would suggest the higher top speed would benefit efficiency.
Now we all know that speed is usually a big negative in regard efficiency but still performance is a key part of the value proposition.
I’m just curious why the 110 mph figure was chosen. I mean my Spark EV is governed to a maximum of 90 mph. For many reasons I think the Aptera will be more capable at that and higher speeds but the top speed capability seems so arbitrary.
The point being, if the choice is arbitrary, I would prefer the 125 mph (or 124) over the 110 unless, of course, there is some reason like the Aptera becomes ‘too light’ to stay on the road over 110 … or you want to put 112 mph rated tires on the car because higher top-speed rating will cost more.
MemberAugust 26, 2021 at 10:41 am
It could be a limitation of the motors or the cooling system, my money is on the cooling system. They are trying to use skin cooling instead of a radiator, that trades off reduced drag for cooling efficiency. If you want to race it then you’ll probably need to beef up the cooling and hack the software to remove the speed limit. They claim that right to repair is one of their objectives which I would interpret as meaning that some if not all of the software will be open source, if they do that it won’t be hard to remove the limitation.
MemberAugust 26, 2021 at 10:42 am
I assume that this is a RPM limitation on the motors. I know with the Chevy Spark that you mentioned, that was the reason for the speed limitation (and the fact the battery would die in 5 minutes at that speed).
I personally have no desire to drive this thing over 110MPH, so I’m okay with that. In fact, I’d prefer the opposite, set the upper limit to 110, but give me a way to limit lower (which I would only use for kids if I let them drive it).
MemberAugust 26, 2021 at 11:39 am
This was discussed in the previous forum – the Elaphe motors provide this limit and I assume Aptera is fine to live within those limits.
MemberAugust 26, 2021 at 12:38 pm
George, as indicated in other posts on this thread, it is a limit based on the motor technology. Personally, I don’t care since I have never driven where it was practical or lawful to even drive 110 MPH nor would I want to be on a highway with someone that does.
I owned a Lamborghini Diablo (Yes I am ashamed now) had a top speed of 200MPH. I never drove it more than 85.
MemberAugust 26, 2021 at 2:25 pm
I may or may not have driven my BMW 2-er at 110 MPH someplace in Arizona. And maybe on the 8 in CA once.
But don’t tell anyone!
MemberAugust 26, 2021 at 8:24 pm
I think the maximum speeds one has run often has to do with their geography and culture. I mean, the southwest and even the southeast are home of stock car racing and often long, flat straightaways that young men, certain of their immortality, often go beyond the double-nickle numbness of urban and suburban life.
Speed limits are in the 75-80 mph range and many highways are literally alone in the middle of a forest or plain and it is not uncommon for folks to let the hammer down in either a momentary lapse in moderation or a moment of exhilaration.
I think probably my interest here, as an investor, is that it beat the number-one selling two-seater – the Mazda Miata. It waxes it in acceleration, efficiency, I hope comfort and handling but not top speed.
MemberAugust 26, 2021 at 6:30 pm
Usually the car’s top speed rating is limited by the tire speed rating. Admittedly, probably the only place that I would drive 125MPH would be the drag strip. But that is one of the appeals of the tri-motor Aptera. Having a quick 1/4 mile time and higher speed shows off the power to weight ratio and aerodynamics. Obviously the Aptera’s key goals with the tires are having very low rolling resistance to increase EV range and efficiency. But it is also important to try and have grippy tires, for sporty acceleration, braking and cornering. I’m generally not a big supporter of higher top speeds, but it’s nice to have the capability to go 125MPH, as long as it doesn’t hurt Aptera’s other efficiency goals.
MemberAugust 27, 2021 at 10:17 pm
On the old forum, there was an explanation that the motor controller can’t switch quickly enough to achieve rotation above 115 mph. If you want to go faster, you’ll need to get a wheel and tire combination that has a much larger circumference. I don’t think the wheel pants will fit that. Without them, the combination of increased aerodynamic drag and reduced apparent torque may well prevent reaching anything above 100 mph.
MemberAugust 28, 2021 at 6:55 am
Elaphe lists the top speed of their M700 motor (Aptera uses this as the basis for the motors) at 1500 RPMs. The tire size used is rotating at 1460 RPMs when doing 100 MPH. I think to go faster you may be into higher voltage, improved insulation, higher frequencies, and number of motor poles. After the first 20,000 sell then Elaphe or Aptera may address a higher motor speed. I would like to see higher potential speed and tracking the Aptera, but at this point hoping for a productive 2022.
MemberAugust 28, 2021 at 10:19 am
Actually I didn’t know previously but the Lordstown Motors Endurance has a top speed of only 80mph, 5.5 sec 0-60. This is the only other vehicle using Elaphe Motors.
Be happy with 110mph. If Aptera had a 80mph top speed I flat out wouldn’t buy the car. It’s just a technical issue with in wheel motors that can be fixed if the manufacturer wants to pay more and pass that cost on to the consumer.
MemberAugust 28, 2021 at 2:23 pm
I think I get that the issue with the higher speed is either inherent limitations or overly optimistic expectations of the in-wheel motors. In-wheel motors are a relatively young technology and it will likely be a few years before they offer higher top speeds, if there is a demand.
It is far from a deal-killer.
MemberAugust 28, 2021 at 5:10 pm
The only time I did 110 MPH was when I was about 19, driving my Corvair on a long down hill stretch on an expressway.