The owl isn’t known for any speed records but there is one ‘owl’ that has an acceleration record. It’s the Aspark Owl and was recently confirmed as the quickest accelerating car in the world – 0 to 60 mph (96 km/h) in 1.72 seconds, set at the Misano World Circuit in Italy. It is also the first Japanese all-electric hypercar to go into production for commercial sale.
“It’s a great honour for us to announce this achievement, reached in a record time,” said Aspark CEO Masanori Yoshida. “In 2015 when we decided to start this project, no one believed it could have been done”.
From concept to production in 3 years
The Owl was first shown as a concept in 2017 and a production prototype was displayed at the 2019 Dubai Motor Show. The original plan had been to start first deliveries in the second quarter of 2020, but the COVID-19 pandemic disrupted the schedule. Production is now underway with a limited series of 50 cars to be available worldwide, each one priced from 2,900,000 euros (about RM14.4 million). The Owl will be offered by selected dealers in North America, Europe and Japan, as well as the Middle East.
The hypercar is the product of Aspark, a Japanese company which ventured into car manufacturing in recent years. The company was founded in 2005 by Yoshida and has global operations providing engineering and R&D services for the automotive industry, as well as for electronic, industrial and medical sectors. It has a Technology Development Centre in Japan and also carries out development and production of the Owl hypercar in Turin, Italy.
The Owl is the first of a series of extreme and disruptive automotive projects planned by the Osaka-based company. It has the most powerful powertrain with 4 electric motors ever made. The rotational speed of each motor is 15,000 rpm, said to be the fastest in the world.
They produce a total output of 1,480 kW (2012 horsepower), with maximum torque of around 2,000 Nm. That’s 3 times more power than Formula E electric racing cars and 2 times more than today’s Formula 1 cars.
Unique Battery Monitoring System
The centrally mounted unique shape of the battery pack is specifically designed and developed for the Owl. The lithium-ion battery pack has a total capacity of 1,300 kW and can be charged within 80 minutes with 44 kW system.
One of the strongest characteristics of the battery pack is the Battery Monitoring System, which continuously monitors the level of each cell and protects the battery from overcharge, over-discharge, overheat and more. This safety device keeps the battery system under automatic control.
Carbonfibre monocoque structure
The chassis of the Owl is a single piece carbonfibre monocoque structure. The overall weight of the chassis is only 120 kgs. Honeycomb features are used on the chassis in order to absorb the shock as much as possible and to increase the safety. The body of the Owl, weighing 180 kgs, is completely made with the highest quality level of CFRP, which has high stiffness, an extreme level of lightness and a great beauty.
Stainless steel frames under the carbonfibre roof and a combination of steel frames with high stiffness ensure maximum safety for the occupants in the cockpit in case the car rolls over. It is just 99 cm tall, but the ride height can be varied between 80 and 160 mm.
“By accelerating the final stage of the Owl project in Italy and establishing a new legal subsidiary in Switzerland (Aspark Promotion AG) dedicated to the hypercar business, Aspark reinforces its international presence outside Japan,” said Head of Sales and Communication, “We are not only delivering the premium-level hypercars to our customers, but we also take the full responsibility for aftersales, right level of warranty and full product liability.”