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Quant e-Sportlimousine drives on flow-cell battery power

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February 27, 2014

NanoFlowcell teases the Quant e-Sportlimousine

NanoFlowcell teases the Quant e-Sportlimousine

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Lichtenstein-based start-up NanoFlowcell will reveal a working prototype it calls the Quant e-Sportlimousine at next week's Geneva Motor Show. More than just a concept car or styling exercise, the car showcases "an entirely new energy storage system."

Geneva will be a coming out party for NanoFlowcell AG, a research and development company that formed late last year. We don't know too much about the company, but it says that it's focused on the development of drive technology and has been experimenting with quantum chemistry and molecular engineering. Outside of the big promise quoted above, the company is holding its tongue on the details of the NanoFlowcell drive.

The name "Quant" may sound familiar, particularly when in the context of the Geneva Motor Show. Koenigsegg showed an electric supercar by the very same name and logo at the 2009 Geneva show.

The Koenigsegg/NLV Solar Quant debuted at the 2009 Geneva Motor Show

The Koenigsegg Quant was developed with NLV Solar, whose Nunzio La Vecchia is the founder of NanoFlowcell. That car used a combination of solar cells and "Flow Accumulator Energy Storage" to reserve power for its 512-hp electric motor. The latter certainly sounds like the starting point for, if not just a different name of, NanoFlowcell technology.

We're a little wary of an "entirely new" technology from someone whose last revolutionary design never made it past the auto show circuit. That said, there has been a lot of recent talk about electrochemical flow batteries, which sounds to be what the NanoFlowcell storage system is. We've looked at flow battery research from the likes of MIT and Harvard, and the Quant should provide a glimpse at how such technology can power an electric vehicle.

Flow batteries hold the promise of some game-changing breakthroughs for electric vehicles (yeah, we've heard that about other technologies, too). Last summer, GE teamed with Berkeley Lab to pursue a water-based flow battery design that it believes could price it 75 percent lower than traditional EV batteries while offering more than 240 miles (386 km) of driving range. The research is part of the US Department of Energy's ARPA-E RANGE program. Flow batteries also have the promise of recharge times in line with gas tank fueling.

An illustration of the flow battery system being researched by GM and Berkeley

Whatever NanoFlowcell's specific battery formula is, it's housed in a four-seat sports car. That's the same style as the Koenigsegg Quant, but the Quant e-Sportlimousine is stretched out to 17 ft (5.25 m). The front and rear teaser photos show a visually interesting design with a double-bubble roof, curvy front fenders, and plenty of room for airflow. It definitely has some visual changes from the Quant we saw in 2009.

NanoFlowcell seems determined to prove its plans to see this iteration of the Quant through, announcing a partnership with Germany's Bosch Engineering last week.

"In the coming months and years, we will work with our system development partner Bosch Engineering GmbH on further development and international homologation of the Quant e-Sportlimousine," La Vecchia explained in the announcement. "Transforming an initial prototype with NanoFlowcell powertrain into a series-production vehicle that can be used around the world is a big challenge. We are certain that we can manage it with this established and experienced partner."

We'll be sure to get the full details about the Quant e-Sportlimousine and its NanoFlowcell technology at the Geneva Motor Show. It will be one of many interesting debuts and concept cars.

Source: NanoFlowcell

About the Author
C.C. Weiss Upon graduating college with a poli sci degree, Chris toiled in the political world for several years. Realizing he was better off making cynical comments from afar than actually getting involved in all that mess, he turned away from matters of government and news to cover the things that really matter: outdoor recreation, cool cars, technology, wild gadgets and all forms of other toys. He's happily following the wisdom of his father who told him that if you find something you love to do, it won't really be work.   All articles by C.C. Weiss
6 Comments

All they need is to make the storage system a reality, if it really can do as written. And make it cheap. Bosch deffinitely can do it. Let's hope so.

t__
27th February, 2014 @ 01:15 am PST

Funding - as usual - will be a big hurdle.

Getting past the barriers put up by Big Oil (buying anything that even looks like a viable patent so they control) may be even harder!

However, I wish them luck.

The Skud
27th February, 2014 @ 07:09 pm PST

Have Tesla Motors use this as backup for cars etc.

Awesome.

Stephen N Russell
28th February, 2014 @ 05:30 pm PST

Will someone please produce the evidence that Big Oil is out there buying up technology patents that would change markets? Good grief I have heard it for years and yet no one has any evidence.

Just a bunch of hot air. "My dad's friend invented a carburetor that gets 150 mpg but the oil companies bought it and have hidden it away!" Hmmm? Lots of holes in that story. I actually know a guy who told me this story!

I'm not suggesting that oil, or any other industrial groups are driven only by their righteous desires. Certainly many of them hire lobby groups to get things done that we wouldn't want. That's a whole other issue I won't get started on why people I vote for should take money or orders from anyone but the voters!

There are other industries that have much higher rates of return than "big oil". Insurance, banking and software/hardware companies wouldn't even take a second look at an investment that has a paltry return like the oil companies make.

Just some real evidence against them would help.

Dr. Veritas
28th February, 2014 @ 05:53 pm PST

Gizmag Editors: It is high time to do at least a full issue or several summing up the current state of play in this arena. Elon Musk's proposed battery gigafactory i s not the only solution any more than any other of a great many emerging choices are. Time to sum up a bit! Show the Flow!

StWils
1st March, 2014 @ 10:38 am PST

The form factor is necessarily large and blocky. Not compatible with Tesla's "skateboard", IMO.

Brian H
5th March, 2014 @ 03:10 pm PST
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