Britain’s fastest-growing electric vehicle company, Liberty Electric Cars, is planning something big, a 1,000mi range electric vehicle, but is it fact or fiction?
Could you call it a pipe-dream if there is no tail-pipe? Time will only tell if Liberty Cars CEO Ian Hobday is just spouting off at the mouth or really has something up his sleeve.
An electric vehicle with 1,000mi range could be possible with a significant advancement in rechargeable batteries, but so far there’s no such technology. With current technology, electric vehicles have a maximum range of 300mi, and even Liberty Electric Cars’ own E-Range, a converted electric Range Rover, only has a range of 200mi.
There’s a point of diminishing returns where adding more battery weight to increase range actually just cancels itself out. Battery capacity goes up with weight, but range goes down with weight.
Another problem is cost, and even industry-leading Tesla Model S 85kWh has a 300mi range and costs just shy of $100,000. Liberty Electric Cars’ E-Range starts at more than twice that, so what would a 1,000mi-range electric vehicle cost using current technology, more than $1 million?
Hobday though, is optimistic and says of the industry as a whole, “If I have to forecast where we’re going to be, right now we’re at 200 to 300 miles without too much trouble. We will be at 400 to 500 miles within two or three years.” Does Hobday have something up his sleeve that reduces battery weight and cost and increases range? Possibly, as he further commented, “Our engineering team has recently seen a new type of energy storage that would allow electric vehicles to reach a range equal to, or potentially in excess of, what today’s best internal combustion engines can achieve.”
This seems like quite an optimistic assertion, but with all the research into rechargeable batteries today, certainly someone is going to stumble upon the next game-changing battery technology. Whichever electric vehicle company licenses it and produces it will jump to the head of the class. Does Liberty Electric Cars have what it takes?