LAS VEGAS- One of the biggest breakthroughs in automotive technology since Tesla unveiled its Roadster in 2008 may have just happened.
Faraday Future unveiled its FFZERO1 Concept on Monday at CES in Las Vegas. It’s a high-performance, all-electric, (likely) fully-autonomous car with a design that’s unlike anything we’ve seen outside of Hollywood. (The company says it wants to be called “FF.”)
CCTV America’s Mark Niu has more from Las Vegas.
Faraday Future unveils electric car of the futureLAS VEGAS- One of the biggest breakthroughs in automotive technology since Tesla unveiled its Roadster in 2008 may have just happened. Faraday Future unveiled its FFZERO1 Concept on Monday at CES in Las Vegas. It's a high-performance, all-electric, (likely) fully-autonomous car with a design that's unlike anything we've seen outside of Hollywood. (The company says it wants to be called "FF.") CCTV America's Mark Niu has more from Las Vegas.
In fact, the car is designed to be unique in every sense. Starting on the outside, it’s engineered to reduce drag as much as possible. FF is planning to build air channels into the car so that air flows through it, rather than off of it. This means the car could go faster using less power. The air flow could also be used to improve battery cooling. This concept car has four motors — one for each wheel. At top specifications it would be 1,000 horsepower and quick enough to go 0 to 60 mph in fewer than 3 seconds.
This FFZERO1 Concept is, in a word, sleek. The interior is basically white with black accents, mirroring the psychology of a clean, electric vehicle. It’s also meant to be soothing so that as a driver sits at a 45-degree angle, the experience is relaxing.
To be clear, this is not meant to be a family car — it has just one seat. The driver would be pretty entertained, though, because the driver’s smartphone fits into the steering column. That smartphone can either be used for live streaming or to control various aspects of the car in real time.
In the coming weeks, FF is planning to break ground on its U.S. production facility in North Las Vegas. Analysts expect the $1 billion, 3 million square foot space to begin production as early as 2017 with a car available for consumers by 2020.
The company is backed by a billionaire Chinese entrepreneur (among other sources). It seems cash is not a challenge for FF– at least not yet. The biggest challenge may be to design the systems needed to make this car a reality, not to mention the engineering to make it actually “go.”
FF appears not to be trying to reinvent the wheel, but rather to invent a different sort of wheel. It announced a partnership with Chinese technology company Letv. This partnership enables FF to work with a company that’s already at the forefront of high-end automotive innovation without having to do all the groundwork itself.
Since Tesla Motors was founded in 2003, it has set the standard for all-electric vehicles. The Roadster revolutionized the industry by going 0 to 60 mph in 3.7 seconds– with a range of 245 miles per charge– and no emissions. It has only gotten better since then for Tesla’s performance; the Model S was named Motor Trend’s “Car of the Year” in 2013.
Several Tesla employees have jumped ship — or just simply joined — FF. They join a team with members from the U.S. space agency NASA.
Whether the Faraday Future FFZERO1 is enough to kill Tesla seems to be little more than a remote possibility. But FF’s chances of gaining at least some market share from Tesla appears to be a reality that’s not-too-far into the future at all.