Nick Heidfeld signed on because the take a look at and improvement driver for the Pininfarina Battista, however he is by no means turned the wheel in anger. In reality, he hasn’t pushed the automotive in any respect as a result of there isn’t any automotive to drive. Pininfarina plans to start testing the 1,877-horsepower electrical supercar early subsequent yr.
Motor Authority spoke to Heidfeld and Battista engineer Rene Wollman on the sidelines of the New York Worldwide Auto Present in April and discovered that the corporate is simply now constructing the primary few chassis. Heidfeld stated the monocoque should be crash examined earlier than any drive exams are finished.
With testing nonetheless six or seven months away, Pininfarina’s objective of placing the primary automotive in a buyer’s arms by the tip of 2020 appears unsure. Nonetheless, Wollman stated the event course of continues to be on observe.
Nick Heidfeld of Automobili Pininfarina
Testing on simulators was scheduled to start in Might or early June, in accordance with Wollman.
Wollman stated the simulator testing will assist speed up the event course of by offering studying that may assist with modifications earlier than the automotive is ever placed on the highway.
Heidfeld stated it is unclear the place the corporate will take a look at the automotive in the meanwhile however it’ll most likely be someplace within the south of Europe. Wollman stated Europe has a alternative of racetracks for testing, however the firm hasn’t chosen which it’ll use but. That may develop into clear early subsequent yr.
For now, Heidfeld acts as a model ambassador. As soon as he will get behind the wheel, although, he’ll faucet into his years of racing expertise, together with his time in Components One, to hone the automotive’s dynamics.
“With my expertise from motorsport, I am fairly assured that I am going to have a very good feeling for what the automotive’s doing, the way it’s behaving, if it is understeering, oversteering, to tune it completely for the observe,” Heidfeld stated, noting the automotive will not solely be a observe weapon. “For me personally the first goal is to make this automotive enjoyable to drive,” he continued.
Heidfeld defined that he’ll drive the automotive and provides suggestions to the engineers about the way it acts, stating what elements could contribute to that habits. It’s going to then be as much as the engineers to regulate the automotive accordingly. This shall be Heidfeld’s first expertise serving to to develop a highway automotive.
The Pininfarina Battista will take its 1,877-hp powertrain from Croatian electric-car agency Rimac. Rimac has confirmed its electrical automotive prowess with the Concept_One, and plans to start deliveries of the C_Two in 2020. Nonetheless, Rimac’s primary enterprise is supplying electrification know-how to automakers, and it just lately secured a $90 million funding from Hyundai to just do that. The Battista’s powertrain will comprise 4 electrical motors and a 120-kwh battery pack to ship 1,696 pound-feet of torque and a Zero-62 mph time of two.Zero seconds, numbers just like these of the C_Two. With a motor for every wheel, pinpoint torque vectoring shall be doable.
“One of many cool issues goes to be the torque vectoring. It is an enormous profit, and a implausible software to tune the automotive to most likely no matter we wish it to do,” Heidfeld stated.
Despite the fact that Rimac will present the components, Pininfarina will calibrate the powertrain.
“You may actually do rather a lot in calibration,” Wollman stated, stressing that the automotive will act in another way from a Rimac.
The automotive will use a carbon-fiber monocoque with one other monocoque for its T-shaped battery pack. The suspension will include double wishbones entrance and rear, with standard dampers, springs, and anti-roll bars. The corporate is taking a look at adaptive dampers at this level, however that might change. The automotive will even supply 5 drive modes, with settings to carry ahead elements like consolation, sportiness, and vary.
The Pininfarina Battista is predicted to promote for about $2.2 million and the corporate will solely construct 150 of them. That is much more than the 25 C_Twos Rimac plans to construct.
Will Heidfeld get a type of vehicles?
“Not without spending a dime that is for certain. I attempted my hardest in negotiating,” Heidfeld stated, noting there shall be no reductions for anybody, even the CEO.
Nicely, not less than he’ll get to drive it, which is much more than most of us. He’ll simply have to attend awhile.