Governed top speed set at 110 mph; why not 125 mph?

Aptera Community Aptera Discussions Governed top speed set at 110 mph; why not 125 mph?

Aptera Community Aptera Discussions Governed top speed set at 110 mph; why not 125 mph?

  • Governed top speed set at 110 mph; why not 125 mph?

  • George Hughes

    August 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.

  • Joshua Rosen

    August 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.

  • Dan Stevens

    August 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).

  • Gabe Kemeny

    August 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.

  • John Malcom

    August 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.

    • Robert Hauck

      August 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!

    • George Hughes

      August 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.

  • Dean McManis

    August 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.

  • Paul Evans

    August 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.

  • Donald Zerrip

    August 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.

  • Henry Kitt

    August 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.

    • George Hughes

      August 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.

  • David Marlow

    August 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.

    • Curtis Cibinel

      October 16, 2021 at 5:46 pm

      Unless you have a perfect flat open road higher speed is not a great idea. 3 months ago some 18 year old kids lost control and hit a post going 110 not far from my window – still has a memorial. The vehicle and occupants were in thousands of pieces and the guy that discovered it is in therapy. In general anything over 110 is stupidly dangerous.

  • N. Bruce Nelson

    October 15, 2021 at 1:34 pm

    George, I you think have the answer. The clock speed of the motor controller is the limiting factor.

  • John Malcom

    October 15, 2021 at 3:35 pm

    Paul Evans on his 27August Post in this string answered the question correctly finding the answer in the old(Previous site/forum FAQ.) It is a limitation of the motor controller’s capacity to change the flux. For a great tutorial on axial flux motors and an understanding of the complexity of changing flux, Paul Evans has posted a video in the Axial Flux thread on this forum.

  • Ron Miller

    October 15, 2021 at 4:25 pm

    On a related topic is there any plan to be streaming vehicle data to a central location for maintenance, etc.? I wouldn’t want to get a letter warning me that I was going 111 (downhill), and my vehicle has now been limited to 109! 🙂

    • John Malcom

      October 15, 2021 at 5:48 pm

      HHa! Ron we would expect you to exercise more self control with your lead throttle foot

  • G Johns

    October 16, 2021 at 10:08 pm

    Why not 90? I’m good with 90. Maybe even 85, remember those days where the speedos only went to 85.

    • John Malcom

      October 16, 2021 at 10:14 pm

      Must have been before my time…… Cough cough………

    • Joshua Rosen

      October 17, 2021 at 8:04 am

      I’d be fine with 90, wouldn’t matter to me at all. In terms of a paper limit 110, i.e. what’s listed in the specs, 110 is a good number. It’s much faster than you would ever go on a public roadway so the car isn’t the limit, it’s your tolerance for tickets that will hold you back.

      If they want to make the software open so that someone can hack the car for the dragstrip that would be fine with me also. It’s the lightest weight EV out there so it has a lot of potential. If you are willing to blow up the motors on a racetrack then as long as you understand that’s out of your pocket not the company’s, go for it. People have been blowing up internal combustion engines on race tracks for as long as there have been cars, why not melt some electric motors also.

  • John Trotter

    October 17, 2021 at 11:44 am

    Living in Germany for several years and driving a Porsche Boxster and an Audi All Road (V8), I have to say 100 mph was not our top speed in either. We did develop a preference, however, for the Boxster on curves and the All Road on autobahns (when speed limits were not posted, which they often were). I think I want our Aptera to model on Porsche handling: fast, but curve-friendly.

  • Pistonboy Delux

    October 17, 2021 at 6:30 pm

    Frequently while driving my Porsche 944 to work, I would look down at the speedometer to see it registering 95 mph. I had no idea I was going that fast.

    I am reminded of a friend saying he could drive his VW Beetle at 35 mph and feel like he was going 70 mph. He said he could have lots of fun and stay legal.

  • Fanfare 100

    October 17, 2021 at 8:44 pm

    I once drove my Mitsubishi Mirage to 115 mph. That was scary insane and I’ll never do it again. lol

    I’m still here to write about it. The Aptera is just a tad lighter. No, I think I’m more than happy with its top speed of 110 mph. Why, I would evben be happy with a top speed of 95 mph.

    I’m more the hypermiler type anyhoo. I get my thrills by making my Mitsubishi Mirage get more than 64 miles per gallon between Delaware and Ottawa Canada. My exciting challenge will be not in how fast I can go but how far I can go on a single charge, despite what the EPA says. 😂

  • Llewellyn Evans

    October 18, 2021 at 3:46 am

    The Aptera has to be saleable to the largest number of people.

    Most people want reliability, economy, off the mark acceleration and a reasonably high top speed. The current setup seems to have an excellent balance. Plenty of acceleration 0-60mph in 3.5 seconds. Plenty of speed if you don’t want to lose your drivers license. Unparalleled fuel economy.

    The car is right how it is.

  • Joshua Caldwell

    October 18, 2021 at 5:25 am

    From my ’92 Grand Prix to my current car, I’ve never been in a car that wasn’t limited to 110mph unless the governor was overridden. I’ve also found that 90mph is usually when the cars handling becomes less stable.

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