Company says "battery-refueling" stations are cheaper than standard chargers

Give Nunzio La Vecchia credit for being blunt, if not exactly accurate. The chief technology officer of NanoFlowcell Holdings recently touted his company's so-called flow-cell battery technology in a blog post. And according to him, "virtually no one wants an electric vehicle."

More than 370,000 prospective Tesla Model 3 buyers notwithstanding, La Vecchia says his company's battery-"refueling" proposition is far better than recharging vehicles. The concept is that, instead of a 1,500 pound (680 kilogram) lithium-ion battery that can take hours to fully recharge, NanoFlowcell's setup includes two tanks – one with positive liquid electrolytes and one with negative liquid electrolytes – that can carry 40 gallons (151 litres), as well as a shoebox-sized flow cell. There, the positive and negative electrolytes (similar to salt water) react to create the power that ends up moving the vehicle.

The company says that conventional gas tanks can more cheaply be retrofitted to carry the liquids than the cost of building plug-in vehicle recharging stations. Additionally, a NanoFlowcell-equipped vehicle can be filled up in about five minutes.

Back in October, the company seemed to be talking big as well, pitching an all-wheel drive vehicle that could go from 0 to 60 miles per hour (0-96 kilometres per hour) in less than three seconds, had a range of more than 500 miles (805 km), and had a top speed of 186 mph (299 km/h). The Quant F concept vehicle and the smaller Quantino concept were unveiled at last year's Geneva Motor Show. The company said at the time that production could start as early as this year, and that its first vehicles may hit the streets as soon as 2018. We shall see. While we wait, check out the wording of the rather optimistic blog post below.


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