All-electric Porsche Mission E expected to get multiple variants

Electric car sales are on the rise. Nearly every mainstream automaker has or is working on a fully-electric vehicle to meet ever-increasing customer demands. Porsche's first foray into the full-electric camp is the upcoming Mission E, a performance sedan with its sights aimed squarely at TeslaAccording to Autocar, demand is up so much for electrified vehicles that Porsche is expanding the scope of the Mission E and will offer several variants when the car goes on sale with a different, still-to-be-determined name in either 2019 or 2020.

Worldwide, the Panamera E-Hybrid makes up 60 percent of that model's sales. In Scandinavia, that number jumps to 90 percent. Demand is only going to grow as different regions begin to offer tax incentives and other bonuses for driving electric or electrified vehicles. Porsche is pivoting, setting up the Mission E to reach an even wider audience than originally predicted. Porsche wants to sell 20,000 Mission E sedans each year. Considering the success of cars like the Tesla Model S, it doesn't seem like that far of a stretch.

The Mission E is the first all-new model line since the Macan was introduced in 2014. While range is important, Porsche is focused on performance first and foremost. It will leverage EV strengths like torque and a low center-of-gravity. Two electric motors - one at each axle - will give the car all-wheel drive and should help the car compete favorably against the competition at Tesla. The Mission E concept produced 600 horsepower and 663 pound-feet of torque.

That said, the production Mission E is expected to get about 310 miles of range on a single charge. Additionally, the car will have an 800V rapid-charging system that will give the car an 80-percent charge in just 15 minutes. Porsche is working with Hitachi on the technology. A bigger battery would give the car a longer range, but it would also add a lot of weight. Since performance is paramount, range is being slightly sacrificed. More variants are expected that vary both overall range and performance. That, too, mirrors Tesla's Model S strategy.

Solid state batteries could also be in the Mission E's future, though that is still a long way off. Solid state batteries are lighter and more compact than today's lithium-ion units, helping alleviate one of the biggest hurdles facing electric cars.

The production Mission E, or whatever it will eventually be called, is expected to start around $85,000, or about as much as an entry-level Panamera. For reference, a Tesla Model S 75D starts around $75,000 before subtracting any tax benefits or incentives.

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