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Electric motors, maximum and approved power: the differences

DRAGSTER O MICETTI? – The data of some electric cars they are amazing: powers which easily exceed 500 bhp and monstrous torques in fact define top performance, even if sometimes tarnished by important weights. However, this symphony of HP and Nm suddenly becomes silent when you look at the official data which show two power levels: at the bombastic maximum power in fact, it contrasts with a much more modest one “approved power”, a simple word that seems to extinguish dreams of glory. The value of her is in fact so reduced as to make it possibly drivable by novice drivers, for example, the Porsche Taycan Turbo S and the brand new Abarth 500e. Yet these cars, each in its own segment, guarantee the character and performance of true sports cars: what’s the catch?

> In the photos above two electric motors.

POWERFUL BUT WITH BREATHABILITY – The crux of the matter is precisely in the approved power, which refers to the UN/ECE R-85 standard which governs the principles forengine approval internal combustion and electric ones intended for motor vehicles (equipped with at least 4 wheels) of class M and N, with the former intended for the transport of people and the latter used for the transport of goods and with a maximum mass not exceeding 3.5 tons. This legislation prescribes that the homologable power of the electric engines be that average measured over 30 minutes with full throttle. At the beginning of the test, the engine delivers all the power it is capable of, but going forward, the control electronics limit the delivery so that the internal temperature never exceeds values ​​of about 180 degrees centigrade, the maximum that can be tolerated by the insulating enamel. which covers the copper wire of the windings.

LARGE DISCREPANCIES – These limitations explain the big discrepancy between the homologated and maximum kW: the Taycan Turbo S claims 142 kW/193 HP and 560kW/761 HP respectively. The difference can be strong, and it is important because on the continuous power (the only one present in the registration certificate) yes pay the bill and the possibility of driving for novice drivers is calculated. To say, the Fiat Nuova 500 has 118 CV (or 87 kW) peak e 58 CV (43 kW) continuous (photo below). When driving, what matters is the maximum power: hardly, even when overtaking, you ask for everything for more than a few seconds.

CORRECTION NEEDED – About the novice drivers with mouth watering we unfortunately have to deny the possibility, which we had mentioned as a provocation, that they could immediately drive powerful electric cars. We recall that the limit of 55 kW/ton for cars that can be driven by those who have just taken a driving license had been raised to 65 kW/t for electric and plug-in hybrids precisely in consideration of their weight average higher. At the same time, however, for these “on tap” vehicles, the power ceiling of the engine set at 70 kW/95 HP and it was established that the approved power (Who the news). The combination of these modifications therefore made the heavy but extremely dynamic Taycan Turbo S accessible to novice drivers, whose approved power brought the power/weight ratio to a sleep-inducing 59.92 kW/ton. A subsequent modification, which reintroduced the cap on maximum engine power, put things right by preventing inexperienced drivers from driving high-performance vehicles. There is, however, one possibility: if the novice driver is accompanied by a person who is under 65 and has had a driving license for more than 10 years then the power limit lapses even if the speed limits remain, as well as the reduction of double the driving license points in the event of an infringement.

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