By Joel Stocksdale
Electrification took on a much bigger role at this year’s SEMA show than we expected, and one car that demonstrates this is the Lithium Mustang EV from Ford and Webasto. Though somewhat subtle on the outside, the skin covers an electric powertrain making over 900 horsepower and 1,000 pound-feet of torque. We spoke with a representative from Webasto and learned some more interesting tidbits about the car.
It’s heavier, but balanced
Webasto used a 2019 Ford Mustang EcoBoost as the base for its electric conversion. Stock, that car weighs in at 3,542 pounds. According to the Webasto rep, the complete Lithium Mustang weighs about the same as a GT500, which tips the scales at 4,171 pounds. But most of that weight is in the batteries, which can be spread out. Webasto put about a third of the batteries under the hood with the motor, and the rest over the rear axle, which resulted in a perfect 50/50 front/rear weight balance. With the weight sitting over the rear axle, the Webasto representative explained that they felt it was unnecessary to have some sort of wing or spoiler to provide downforce for grip at the back.
The battery and motor system is advanced, but has an odd limitation
As we’ve mentioned, the Lithium Mustang EV has an 800-volt battery system that can rapidly discharge power, which is necessary for the beastly motor under the hood. Part of what makes that possible is the liquid cooling and heating system that can keep the batteries an an optimum temperature. The potent motors are of the axial flux design, which places magnets on the faces of the rotors, rather than on the periphery, allowing for a compact and power-dense package. One odd feature absent from the Lithium Mustang is DC fast-charging capability. It only supports Level 2 AC charging, but the Webasto representative said the company is working on DC charging support.
Forget buying one
Sadly, we’re not going to see a Webasto-designed electric Mustang on dealer floors anytime soon, nor is there a kit coming to make this a reality in the aftermarket. The representative explained that this was purely a concept for Ford and Webasto to show what’s possible with electric powertrain technology, and Webasto won’t be offering a kit for hobbyists. But Webasto is still developing electric tech, and plans to do some field testing on the Lithium Mustang to get performance and range numbers. The representative also said it will offer parts for the commercial sector and OEMs. So maybe we’ll see some of the knowledge gained from this concept appear in a future electrified generation of Mustang.
This article originally appeared on Autoblog, the complete authority for news, reviews and car-buying research.
Published at Thu, 07 Nov 2019 20:33:00 +0000