Quant e-Sportlimousine by nanoFLOWCELL

Written By: EightySix

Edited By: Assen Gueorguiev

QUANT e-Sportlimousine by nanoFLOWCELL

Seeing the future is an astounding experience. Imagine several years ago talking to a person in a phone booth flipping through the yellow pages. Tell him that soon a device smaller than his wallet will connect him to libraries of information and enable face-to-face international video conversation.

Can you imagine a 900 horsepower electric car with a 300 mile range that runs on saltwater? A zero-to-sixty in under three seconds and a top speed over 230 miles per hour? Astounding, for certain, and if you'd been at the 2014 Geneva Auto show, you'd have seen the future.


The Saltwater Rocket

The QUANT e-Sportlimousine by nanoFLOWCELL is the vehicle making these claims. The voluptuous ocean-blue gull-wing sports sedan sitting on twenty-twos turned heads in Geneva with its Ferrari-quality looks and its revolutionary power plant. If this prototype ever becomes a production car, it will sell for way over a million dollars.

Saltwater is an oversimplification. You can't fill this thing up with a hose in the Mediterranean. It's fueled by two tanks of water charged with electrolytes and metallic salts. One is positive (called the catholyte) and the other negative (called the anolyte). The chemical mixture is a proprietary secret. When the fluids are pumped through the battery, electrons are transferred from one side to the other, creating an electric current.

The electricity produced feeds a motor for each wheel. The energy production creates no heat. Overall the vehicle has few moving parts. The battery will not degrade like traditional batteries do and has five times the energy density of a lithium-ion unit.

Once spent, the fluids are collected in a third tank. This environmentally-harmless inert water can be recharged and reused. Refilling the tanks takes no longer than an ordinary gas tank.

QUANT e-Sportlimousine by nanoFLOWCELL
*Click Images to Enlarge*


Flow Cell Technology

The e-Sportlimousine's power-plant is not a new idea, but it is a vast improvement on an old one. The flow cell battery was invented in 1884 by Charles Renard. A 435 kilogram flow battery, using zinc and chlorine, powered the propeller on the airship La France. It flew eight kilometers in 23 minutes and landed back at the launch point, completing the first ever round trip by air.

NASA scientists unsuccessfully revived the technology in 1973, hoping to store solar energy for a moon base using iron and chromium. Other industrial flow batteries have contained uranium, titanium chloride, hydrochloric acid and polysulfide bromide. The batteries used two very different chemical solutions, creating an unrecyclable contaminated third solution. Furthermore, the chemical reactions occurred at high pressure and temperature.

NanoFLOWCELL's invention may be by far the cleanest and most powerful flow battery in history. Recharging and reusing the waste water is a huge accomplishment, as is creating the energy at safe pressure and temperature.


Pulling a Tesla

Why introduce this technology to the world with a starship-quality super-car worth over a million dollars? The same could be asked of Tesla, who brought electric cars into the spotlight with the breathtaking Roadster. The $30,000 middle-class Model 3 will arrive years later.

Both Tesla and nanoFLOWCELL chose to deliver their message in a booming voice, rather than a polite whisper. This is what an EV can be. Now that we have your attention, we'll get to building cars for the masses.

Not only the power and exterior of the e-Sportlimouse are astounding. The interior has no peer. The electronic dashboard is door-to-door with 3D displays and touch-screens. An LED-lined veneer of natural wood softens the overwhelming tech. It's a flabbergasting car inside and out even if you understand nothing about the flow battery system.


Too Astounding to be True?

                                                               Nunzio la vecchia

This is not the first Quant. A prototype built by NLV Solar and Koenigsegg debuted at the Geneva Auto show in 2010. It was powered with a combination of solar cells and "Flow Accumulator Energy Storage". The car was coated in an iron-pyrite (aka Fool's Gold) solar coating. NLV claimed a world-record 50% efficiency. NLV stands for Nunzio La Vecchia, the founder of nanoFLOWCELL. NLV and Koenigsegg parted ways shortly after the Geneva show.

The 2014 car is a collaboration with Bosch. It is larger and curvier than the 2010 version with increased air-flow. Its two-wheel drive predecessor only managed an estimated 5.2 second 0-60. NanoFLOWCELL plans to build a few more prototypes for testing.

Nunzio La Vecchia is an amazing and mysterious character. He's not only an inventor and owner of multiple businesses, but he flies his own plane, races a Maserati, records groovy music and has tons of money. The technology was developed through many late nights of 3D simulation at his DigiLab in Zurich.


As Wild as it Sounds, the Technology Exists

The e-Sportlimousine was made street-legal in Germany on July 22, 2014. The car can now be road-tested throughout the European Union. We'll see what sort of performance numbers it can truly create.

General Electric and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory are currently working on flow batteries using water and inorganic compounds. They hope to triple EV range at a quarter of the cost. They may produce a pack powerful enough to drive a small car within a few years.

In 2013, California required utility companies to purchase 200 megawatt-hours of storage by 2014 and 1325 by 2020, inspiring innovation and demand in the field of efficient energy storage.


Can it Change the World?

Absolutely. If nanoFLOWCELL's battery can produce what it claims, then a scaled-down version would revolutionize what we drive. Cut the power by 80% and supply enough fuel for a 200 mile range. That would sufficiently power a family car. If GE can build a battery with one-tenth the e-Sportlimousine's output, it could power a city-car.

Fueling stations would remain a problem, but if automakers and governments make them a priority, they will sprout quickly. Not long ago, EV charging stations were non-existent. Now they are blooming in cities and along highways.

What will come of the e-Sportlimousine? Flow batteries could be the wave of the future or a lot of condensed vapor.