An electric sportscar with a five-speed manual gearbox has been designed by UK sports car maker Morgan with the support of British technology specialists Zytek and Radshape. Shown as a concept to test market reaction here at the Geneva Motor Show, the radical new roadster could enter production if there is sufficient demand.
The Plus E is based on a tailored version of Morgan’s lightweight aluminium platform chassis clothed in the revised ‘traditional’ body from the new BMW V8-powered Plus 8, also launched at Geneva. Power is delivered by a new derivative of Zytek’s 70kW (94bhp) 300Nm electric engine.
Mounted in the transmission tunnel, the Zytek unit drives the rear wheels through a conventional five-speed manual gearbox. When the clutch pedal is pressed, electronic controls automatically match motor revs to the output shaft speed to ensure a perfect change.
The collaborative research and development project is part-funded by a £ 100,000 grant from the UK Government’s Niche Vehicle Network Programme, which is managed by CENEX to promote the development and commercialisation of new low-carbon vehicle technologies.