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Mighty Porsche Mission E charges into Frankfurt. Image by Porsche.

Mighty Porsche Mission E charges into Frankfurt
All-electric Porsche Mission E concept has 600hp-plus and vastly improved recharge times.
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What's all this about?

Oh, just a completely unexpected Porsche four-seater electric car - the company's first ever - revealed at the Frankfurt Motor Show. It's called the Mission E. And it looks fan-bloody-tastic.

Wow, tell me more about the spec, then.

Its beautiful, lithe body shell is made of aluminium, steel and carbon-fibre reinforced polymer, to keep the weight down, while the massive 21-inch front, 22-inch rear wheels are made of carbon. Yes, carbon. It has a big lithium-ion battery pack located in the chassis between the two axles, which balances the weight and keeps the centre-of-gravity low. And the car's low, too, at just 1,300mm tall.

Are those suicide doors at the back?

Yes, they are, and they give you access to an 'out there' concept car interior, with holographic displays, touchless gesture control, four individual seats based on racing buckets and a five-dial Organic Light Emitting Diode (OLED) instrument cluster (showing Connected Car, Performance, Drive, Energy and Sport Chrono details). The Mission E can also track the driver's eye movements to know which dial they're looking at, while a camera in the rear-view mirror monitors the driver's mood... and then flashes up a smiley emoticon in the dashboard if they're happy. No, we're not joking.

I like the front of the car - what does it remind me of?

Either the 918 Spyder or this year's Le Mans-winning 919 sports car, as it has four-point matrix LED headlights. We happen to like the 3D illuminated Porsche logo in the black strip at the rear of the Mission E, although it's simply an overall wonderful bit of design.

You seem to be avoiding the mechanicals - any reason?

No, just building up to the really good stuff. A pair of permanent magnet synchronous motors (PMSM), akin to those found in the aforementioned 919, serve up more than 600hp between them. The Mission E has four-wheel steer and all-wheel drive on demand, which - coupled to the electric motors' instant grunt - means 0-62mph in 3.5 seconds and 0-124mph in less than 12 seconds. According to Porsche, it can also lap the Nüburgring Nordschleife in less than eight minutes.

Very impressive, but I don't buy an electric car for lap times. What's the range/recharging time like?

The range is around 312 miles on a full charge, but within 15 minutes of juicing at a power point, you can get another 250 miles out of the Mission E.

What?! How?

Porsche has fitted the beast out with 800-volt technology, whereas current electric cars use 400-volt systems. That doubling of the car's electric potential not only cuts charging times drastically, it also allows for less weight on board.

Amazing! And will the Porsche Mission E make production?

We have no idea, but we sincerely hope it - or something a lot like it - replaces the bulbous Panamera when the time comes.

Matt Robinson - 14 Sep 2015

2015 Porsche Mission E concept. Image by Porsche.2015 Porsche Mission E concept. Image by Porsche.2015 Porsche Mission E concept. Image by Porsche.2015 Porsche Mission E concept. Image by Porsche.2015 Porsche Mission E concept. Image by Porsche.

2015 Porsche Mission E concept. Image by Porsche.2015 Porsche Mission E concept. Image by Porsche.2015 Porsche Mission E concept. Image by Porsche.       - Porsche road tests
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