They are launching a $2 Million electric supercar using the lithium batteries and systems Rimac produces for brands including Land Rover and Koenigsegg.
The Rimac C-Two is a beauty, with stunning good looks power and technology, scissor doors, 1,194 HP, 230 MPH top speed, and 0-60 MPH in a track-worthy 1.85 seconds, and an all-carbon monocoque chassis.
Equally impressive is that this EV roadster has a 400-mile range on a single charge from Rimac’s own lithium batteries.
The active rear wing, or spoiler, features an air brake that will help slow down this puppy if your foot wags too happily on the accelerator.
I did a walk-around of this impressive all-electric GT-style supercar recently with Rimac head of sales Kreso Coric, who told me that even though it’s an EV, which traditionally is as quiet as a mouse, C-Two “will be as noisy as hell”.
If you are paying that much for that much power, you should be able to hear it, so Rimac is adding the familiar throaty roar of a V8 or V12. Stay tuned (pardon the pun) to learn whether that roar will be more Porsche or Ferrari.
There are high-intensity LED lights front and back, composed of nearly 60 hand-built individual lights, including air-tunnels for ventilation of battery heat buildup.
Coric tells me programming heat management of the batteries was a massive task.
“The system has to know when to cool down the batteries to prevent overheating,” which is true of any EV or hybrid, and crucial to the safe operation of a supercar.
The power comes from a liquid-cooled 12o-kWH battery pack mounted under the floor, which adds to the low center of gravity. There’s a motor on each wheel for AWD grip, and the same flat gearbox used in Formula I racing, for additional torque.
As you would expect at this pricetag, the interior is gorgeous, all silky leather or suede-soft Alcantara, carbon fiber trim, a flat-bottom racing-style steering wheel, and a large, all-digital info-tainment screen.
But to me, the outstanding features are two bits of technology Rimac may or may not be licensing and sharing with other manufacturers.
There no key to open the doors or start the engine. The Rimac C_Two relies on facial recognition for both.
There’s a tiny camera in the door frame. When it recognizes you, the door unlocks. Ditto the tiny camera pointed at the driver’s seat. The algorithm is programmed to recognize as many as 50 faces, so your significant other and your best friends can be added. Or not.
The other feature I love is “Driving Coach” mode.
Although it’s designed for the racetrack, it’s the kind of technology I hope will trickle down to our driveways, because it could make driving safer for all of us, especially inexperienced teens borrowing the family jalopy for date night.
In this mode, side-by-side heads-up screens show your actual driving line and the optimal one a pro would take, and suggests things like braking earlier into the turn. It will even assist with steering to help you nail the perfect race line.
The supercar also includes the driver assist systems we expect now in all current model vehicles, including lane keeping and blind-spot monitoring.
Greater Role for Women in Automotive
Rimac is also forward-thinking in its view of gender equality and giving women a larger role in R&D.
“We want to encourage women to join us,” Coric tells me. To do that, he company has established a foundation to recruit female electrical and mechanical engineers, designers and computer programmers from Europe’s universities.
“We have an incredible need” at the growing company, which hopes to double in size by the end of the decade, and women are central to the plan.
Rimac will produce just 150 of the limited edition C-Two by 2020, and expects to sell half of them in the USA, and half of those in California, including to women.