Detroit Electric SP:01 electric sports car tests in EuropeEnlarge Photo
It's easy to be cynical of startup companies. They enter the industry, guns blazing, trying to convince us all that their product will change how we look at cars, or internet shopping, or toasters, and most then quickly vanish never to be seen again.
You'd be forgiven for thinking Detroit Electric would do the same, with its Tesla Roadster-like SP:01 electric sports car. The company revives a name last seen over a century ago and its press release claims to "thrill the EV market" with its "blistering performance and exhilarating dynamics". Only we've been writing about Detroit Electric since 2008, and while its plans have changed in that time, the company, and its car, are still around.
Well, "around" insofar as Detroit Electric is still testing its lightweight, two-seat electric roadster, anyway. The company still hasn't divulged many details of its production and sales plans, but those are due "in the coming weeks". We do know that—unfortunately—the car won't be produced in the city bearing its name, but overseas in the Netherlands. But its management remains in Michigan, and if the SP:01 proves successful, Detroit Electric even has plans for an electric sedan.
Testing of the 200-horsepower, 190-mile range electric sports car is currently underway in Europe, as engineers refine development work carried out since its last public appearance at global events last year. The company still isn't guaranteed success, but with Tesla Motors now concentrating on sedans and crossovers rather than sports cars, perhaps there's still a gap in the market for a car like the SP:01.