Over the past few years, it has become one of the most discussed mysteries among Russian car enthusiasts. It’s the symbol of the upcoming growth that was promised for the Russian e-transport industry in 2021. Yes, we’re talking about Monarch, the new Russian electric car. Let’s see what is actually hiding behind this name!
The Monarch Electric Car: This Is My Design
With Yo-Mobile and Marusya sinking into oblivion, it seemed that the idea of switching to the modern eco-friendly fuels had left Russian inventors. However, on March 29, 2019, a statement about a new startup attempt appeared in the media. From now on, this day may be officially considered ground zero for the Monarch electric car.
Until August 2019, the new project was hastily sewn together somewhere in the offices of Novosibirsk. Guests of the Monarch Concept S presentation and its broadcast audience could only see the pictures of the vehicle. The actual e-mobile was not delivered to the event.
Nevertheless, according to the official website of the brand, there was a lot of work carried behind the scenes. As for the end of March 2020, the plan assumed (briefly):
- developing the concept of an electric vehicle in all areas (technological, economic, etc);
- forming teams and expert lists for prototyping;
- developing and presenting the car’s interior and exterior, including its charging station.
By the way, the source included an extensive quarterly plan with a crash test. It seems that the launch was planned for the end of 2021. The project manager Alexei Ponomarenko has outlined the course of action in several interviews as well. One thing is notable: for 2019, he didn’t promise to present anything other than a picture.
Monarch: Not An Electric Car But A Picture
It all started with Alexey Ponomarenko’s decision to fill the gap in the Russian transport’s electrification, or “we will never outrun Tesla.” With a group of developers, he starts developing a project that would attract both drivers and investors. He placed his bets on …
It’s exactly what Concept S and Concept SX wanted to bring to life. There have been active discussions around the design of the luxury sedan. For instance, rhythms of the body lines reminded enthusiasts of Lexus. Others saw the Tesla Model 3 in the shapes of the back.
Indeed, in terms of size, the Monarch electric car is somewhat reminiscent of the latter. The vehicle length is 5002 mm, width 2000 mm. However, the back with the supposed luggage compartment looks more like concave forms of Chinese mini-cars and, to some extent, Zetta.
The passengers are preparing themselves to be amazed by snow-white leather chairs and a panel made of combined materials. Sensors and buttons are located quite traditionally for a Russian car. The unusually big tablet is removed so as not to distract attention. Still, there’s a surprise. The windshield is intended to combine the functions of a touch screen. Apparently, most buttons will not be needed, since one of the of future electric cars’ features is voice control.
Tech Savvy Side
Monarch has made some serious claims regarding authenticity in its power supply.
First, the developers want to achieve a driving distance of up to 300-600 miles without recharging. That’s why they need a new generation of batteries similar to the Taycan.
Second, a vehicle is intended to use several sources of energy at the same time. As Ponomarenko stated in his interview with Zelyonaya Tochka Starta on March 19, 2020, the first models to be released will only have a 50 kW non-removable battery. It’s the same battery used in popular Nissan LEAF.
The number of synchronous motors depends on the buyer’s needs. The Monarch electric car can fit up to four such motors, 160-190 kW each. It provides from 250 to 1000 horsepowers under the hood. You might as well consider:
- four-wheel drive,
- system of pneumatic suspensions, levers, and racks,
- 1 or 2 electric motors with 8 power options,
- 100 kW battery with the reserve sufficient for 350 miles.
However, there was a need to reject the idea of a replaceable modular battery pack, although it has struck the imagination of journalists and bloggers.
Set of Functions
Justifying the slogan “Environmental friendliness everywhere”, Monarch is attached to several eco-management systems:
- sharing accident-preventing information about external environment between electric cars;
- driver behavior monitoring system;
- autopilot with the ultrasound recognition of obstacles and flaws in the road surface;
- voice control of the car up to self-parking.
Pleasant bonuses include air ionization and visual effects on the windshield matrix. All vehicle maintenance services can be paid directly from the car’s interior.
Fake Luxury Of the Monarch?
Following the ill-fated presentation on December 24, a scandal arose around the vehicle. After all, a prototype of the latest Russian electric car did not appear to the judgment of journalists. As it turned out, the concept car got stuck somewhere on the road due to problems with transportation fees. One thing led to another, and a blogger of the Rusautomobile portal published raw sketches of the lost model. The photos speak louder than the most eloquent descriptions.
This discovery entailed a chain of conspiracy investigations. Apparently, Ponomarenko has long been involved in fraudulent schemes. The goal of his project was only to attract investors and happily lose all the money, just as it happened to his previous financial project.
Yes, indeed, it was an initial plan to create the Monarch electric car using millions of private investments. By the way, anyone can invest at least 250 thousand rubles in the company. So what’s the fraud so far? It seems that people hoped for a quick launch, but got disappointed with an empty prototype.
Nonetheless, there is an elegant explanation. Just look at the concept name. Ponomarenko explained it was called after the butterfly: “fast, green, and silent.” What people saw in an awkwardly tailored draft is just a cocoon for a future beauty that’s going to spread its wings on the roads of Russia.