Rimac C_Two 1,914-hp electric hypercar can drive itself if you're too scared
Ladies and gents, please put your hands together for one of the fastest cars ever built. Rimac's new electric hypercar boasts a top speed of 258 mph (415 km/h), nearly 2,000 horsepower, face recognition locks on its gull-wing doors and level 4 autonomous driving if you're a little intimidated. Which you should be.
Rimac billed its Concept_One as the world's first electric hypercar, and looking at its monstrous 1,088 horsepower and capable chassis, the world nodded in agreement. The company's second car was always going to offer a step up in performance, but we confess, we weren't ready for what the company just pulled the covers off in Geneva.
Meet the C_Two, a car with performance figures so preposterous that we're going to need a category above "hypercar" if this is the way things are going. Megacar? Ubercar? Start thinking about it. These things are so absurdly extreme that the English language will have to expand to accommodate them.
Hold onto your hats. Through an electric motor at each wheel, the C_Two makes a peak of 1,914 horsepower (1,417 kW) and 1,696 lb-ft of torque (2,300 Nm). That's not a typo. Take a moment for those figures to sink in before you read on.
Acceleration times are about what you'd expect: a cheek-flapping 1.85 second 0-60 mph (0-97 km/h) sprint will get you down the freeway on-ramp in a jiffy, test the flexion strength of the seats and put a very healthy gap on any supersport motorcycle you care to name.
If you live a quarter mile from the nearest supermarket, you could get there in 9.1 seconds if there aren't any slow people in the way. Hold the pedal down for 11.8 seconds, and you're blasting through the 186 mph (300 km/h) barrier on the way to a top speed of 258 mph (415 km/h).
It goes without saying, these are rare and hallowed numbers indeed. This car leap-frogs all but two or three of the fastest cars in the world; it's a genuinely monumental engineering achievement. And yet these numbers are just a glimpse at what's possible with high-performance electrics.
It's only been two years since the Concept_One hit the road, and the C_Two has nearly doubled its already ludicrous performance figures. Don't be surprised when somebody doubles it again; compared to gasoline engines, developing stupefying power out of electric motors is a doddle. It's very possible that somebody will make a car soon that motorheads can agree is fast enough, at which point we're all going to have to find something else to argue about.
Ultra-high speed performance is aided by an interesting drivetrain. The two front wheels are driven by single-speed direct drive motors, but the rear wheels have two-speed gearboxes – one gear for brutal low-speed acceleration and another for blistering top-speed work.
In an effort to keep this thing driveable, the C_Two uses intelligent torque vectoring to keep all the wheels pointed in a similar direction, measuring power precisely to each wheel to maintain as much traction as possible. That's unless you want to slide the rear end out, in which case you can select exactly how much drift you want to allow through a twisty knob on the dash, and the car will transition gradually from all-wheel drive to rear wheel drive to help you achieve your dodgy goals.
Anything this fast needs active aerodynamics, and they're here in spades. Cooling intakes open and close themselves to maintain optimal temperatures around the drivetrain, the rear wing lifts itself up and down to give you the amount of downforce it determines you'll be needing, and if you hit the brakes at high speed, the rear wing and hood flaps will stand upright to act as air brakes.
Naturally, everything that can be carbon is carbon, including the eye-popping external bodywork, the gull-wing doors and the monocoque chassis. All necessary to keep the car's weight down to 1,950 kg (4,300 lb) with the heavy 120 kWh Lithium/Manganese/Nickel battery pack integrated into the frame.
As for range, well, drive it sensibly and the C_Two will give you a respectable 403 miles (650 km) between charges. Unleash the power of the ancient gods through your right boot, and you'll make it twice around the 12.9 miles (20.8 km) of the Nurburgring Nordschliefe and probably need a lie down for the 30 minutes it'll take to recharge from 0-80 percent on a fast charger.
The crazy stuff doesn't end with the performance figures. How about facial recognition software that looks at you and decides whether to open the doors? How about sensors that detect the weather you're driving in, and adjust powertrain options accordingly? How about sensor tech that reads your mood while you're driving, and if you're stressed out, it'll soften off the throttle and the ride, and play you some soothing music? We're not sure how exactly it reads how you're feeling, perhaps the seats are fitted with sphincterometers to measure some of the fish-mouth gaping this thing is sure to inspire.
If you take it on a track day, and we sincerely hope you do, the car comes programmed with racing line and braking point data for popular racetracks, which it will helpfully display on screen to help you shave tenths and get the best time you can. And if you can convince somebody to sit in the passenger seat, Rimac provides handy performance data they can read as their intestines rush to clear themselves.
And then, a real head-scratcher. It's capable of level 4 autonomous driving. Festooned with high tech sensors (eight cameras, six radars, 12 ultrasonic dots and LiDAR) and tricked out with 72 ECUs and processors with a combined computing power equal to 22 Macbook Pros, the C_Two will get an Autopilot-like self driving system so you can sit in your priceless Mega-ubercar and do your nails instead of driving it.
There's no pricing information available yet, but this is not a concept. It's a car, and people will be able to buy it, and it's a real thing people will be sitting in and getting compressed against the seats of. It's a real-life fairy tale. Congratulations Rimac, you glorious lunatics, and godspeed. We salute you.
Rimac's promo video can be seen below.