If the new Citroen C-Zero electric mini looks familiar that’s because it is. See, while the French automaker claims in its press release that the EV is developed in collaboration with Mitsubishi, what it really means to say is that the C-Zero is the product of ‘badge engineering’. Like its twin brother, the Peugeot i0n that was revealed at the Frankfurt Show in September, the C-Zero is nothing more than a Mitsubishi i-MiEV with Citroen badges.
Due for launch in the last quarter of 2010, the C-Zero comes with the same electric-drivetrain as the i-MiEV meaning that it s powered by a permanent magnet synchronous motor delivering 47kW or 64bhp from 3,000 to 6,000rpm and a maximum torque of 180Nm from 0 to 2,000rpm that drives the rear wheels through a single-speed reduction gear.
The motor is powered by a 330-volt lithium-ion battery system comprising 88 50Ah cells (for onboard energy of 16kWh) which are mounted in the centre of the vehicle offering a range of around 130 kilometers or 80 miles.
A complete charge of the battery pack takes six hours through a conventional 220-volt socket while an 80 per cent charge is possible in about 30 minutes using an external station with a single-phase current of 125A at 400V, for power of up to 50kW.
The French company says that the four-seater C-Zero, which measures in at just 3.48m in length, can accelerate from zero to 100km/h (62mph) in 15 seconds, from 60 to 90 km/h (37-56mph) in 6 seconds and reach a top speed of 130km/h or 80mph.