According to its makers Epic EV, the TORQ Roadster is the world’s fastest three-wheel electric vehicle and can generate more G-force in a corner than a Ferrari, costing $65k.
A mean green machine, the TORQ Roadster packs in 0-60mph acceleration in four seconds, One G of lateral force when cornering, and doesn’t require a drop of gas. The electric car earns Formula One status, despite the fact it only has three wheels. Its makers claim it is the fastest electric car available on the market.
As well as perfectly smooth and constant acceleration, the electric engine also offers over 400 horsepower, all of which is kept in check with four-piston racing derived brakes and a suspension and chassis set-up that borrows from Formula One technology. Meanwhile, ensuring that none of the horsepower is wasted through dragging around excess weight, the exterior panels are formed from carbon fiber to increase rigidity while keeping the vehicle lightweight.
Its makers, California-based Epic EV, claim that the point of the TORQ is to show consumers that an electric vehicle doesn’t have to compromise on performance and handling in order to be environmentally friendly or energy efficient.
The TORQ Roadster will be officially launched on April 6 and will retail for $65,000 in the US and €50,000 in Europe. Epic EV expects demand to outstrip supply — it only intends to build 50 examples in 2013 and has therefore set up a waiting list for 2014 that anyone with a $5000 deposit can join.
It will no doubt be popular in the company’s native California where sunny days and roof-down motoring are the norm, but in Northern Europe where the summer can be counted in weeks, rather than months, its lack of roof might mean it is more likely to appeal to superbike riders that are looking for something different than a typical sportscar owner.
Nevertheless, the three-wheel motorbike/car hybrid is becoming a much more mainstream choice for drivers and riders looking for a motorcycle’s acceleration and a car’s superior stability and braking. CAN-AM, the US/Canadian quad bike, snowmobile and off-road kart company, debuted its CAN-AM Spyder RS in 2008 — a racing and touring tricycle with two wheels at the front and one at the back that has proven so popular in the biker community that it is in its sixth iteration and has grown from a single vehicle to a three-model range targeting racers and tourers alike. However, unlike the TORQ, the CAN-AM Spyder is powered by a conventional internal combustion engine.