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1,985-HP Aspark Owl Electric Hypercar to Attempt Nurburgring Lap Record: Report

Active aero and monstrous quad-motor all-wheel-drive could give this Japanese-built machine a real shot at setting a new benchmark.

An official from Japan’s homegrown hypercar startup Aspark has reportedly announced in an interview that his company’s electric, nearly 2,000-horsepower Owl will gun for a lap record at the Nürburgring within four months.

“We’re aiming to achieve a new lap record. We’re hoping to have set the record by March 2020,” confirmed Aspark boss Masanori Yoshida to Top Gear. “We’re confident this car has the most speed in the world. It’s got amazing performance.”

Aspark Owl, Rinaldi Fabio, Aspark Company

Yoshida didn’t specify what class of lap record the Owl will tackle, though we think it’s reasonable to rule out the Porsche 919 Evo’s overall record as Aspark’s target. Likewise, beating the electric record set by Volkswagen earlier this year with the ID.R prototype is a tall order for a road car, so we’ll assume Yoshida intends for the Owl to beat either the quickest electric supercar (the Nio EP9, at 6:45.9) or the best time set by a road-legal car, which came from the modified Porsche 911 GT2RS MR. We’ve contacted Aspark for a clarification and will update when we receive one.

Neither time will be easy to beat, though the Owl’s performance specs suggest it has a fighting chance. Quad-motor all-wheel-drive with every imaginable electronic assist might be enough to make manageable its 1,985 horsepower (1,480 kw) and 1,475 pound-feet of torque, which, with a one-foot rollout, Aspark says can launch the car from zero to 60 in 1.69 seconds on street-legal tires. From there, the Owl can bolt up to 186 miles per hour in another 8.9 seconds, and eventually on to a top speed of 248 mph.

The Nürburgring’s 154 corners, of course, don’t favor straight-line speed, and that’s where the Owl’s 4,189-pound weight may prove troublesome. Aspark has done its best to mitigate the penalty of weight by making the Owl as low and sleek as possible, with a 39-inch roofline lower than that of the famously squat Ford GT40, and active aerodynamics. Much of that weight comes from the Owl’s “unique” 64-kWh battery pack, which gives it a range of 280 miles NEDC in lab-perfect conditions (presumably less in the real world). A full recharge, Aspark says, can be accomplished in 80 minutes on a 44-kilowatt feed.

Only 50 miraculous Aspark Owls will be produced. Let’s hope the Nürburgring doesn’t eat one of these birds of prey to make that number 49.

Aspark Owl, Rinaldi Fabio, Aspark Company