Revived luxury car marque Hispano Suiza has revealed an upgraded version of its Carmen electric grand tourer, inspired by the brand’s motorsport heritage.
Called the Carmen Boulogne in reference to one of the Spanish firm’s historic race cars, the limited-run luxury car is claimed to offer substantial performance and handling upgrades over the standard car, most notably receiving subtle powertrain tweaks for a 94bhp power boost, taking overall output to 1099bhp.
The Boulogne retains the same twin-motor, rear-wheel-drive powertrain as the concept, revealed at last year’s Geneva show, with the performance increases mainly a result of its new silicon carbide transistor unit and longer-ratio gearbox. While the standard Carmen is electronically limited to 155mph, the more potent Boulogne is said to crack 180mph, having dispatched the 0-62mph sprint in less than two seconds.
The Boulogne is claimed to pack 1180lb ft of torque – around the same as the W16-powered Bugatti Chiron – and uses torque vectoring technology to send different amounts of power to each rear wheel.
An 80kWh T-shaped underfloor battery pack is expected to offer a range of more than 250 miles, and can be charged from 30%-80% capacity in just 30 minutes using a fast charger.
Like the Carmen concept, the Boulogne is built around a lightweight carbonfibre monocoque chassis, but a number of weight-saving measures have brought the car’s kerb weight down from 1690kg to 1630kg. A ‘newly optimised’ suspension set-up, for example, is claimed to trim 25kg off, while a carbonfibre roof and new sub-chassis have been fitted for enhanced lightness.
Underlining the Boulogne’s sporting ambitions are modifications to the chassis that are claimed to deliver “exceptional dynamics”. Chief among these is a newly configured, stiffer suspension set-up which is claimed to make the Boulogne “predictable and easy to drive”.
The car’s styling is largely identical to that of the Carmen concept, but features exposed carbon fibre body panels and copper-coloured trim elements, and loses the existing car’s rear wheel covers.
Just five examples of the Carmen Boulogne will be built, each priced from €1.65m (£1.43m) before taxes, taking the entire Carmen production run up to 19 units. Customer deliveries are set to begin in 2022.
There is an ongoing debate over who has the rights to the Hispano Suiza name, with Barcelona-based Grup Peralda (maker of the Carmen) engaged in a public dispute with Hispano Suiza Automobilmanufaktur AG, an Austrian manufacturer owned by ex-VW designer Erwin Leo Himmel.