MADISON, Wis. – How fast can an electric vehicle really run?
The electric vehicle community witnessed Tuesday (June 25) Drayson Racing Technologies’ B12 69/EV electric race car hit a new World Electric Land Speed Record of 204.185mph at a racetrack at RAF Elvington in Yorkshire.
The previous world record was 175mph set by Battery Box General Electric in 1974.
Drayson Racing is an Oxford-based motorsport company founded in 2007 by Lord Paul Drayson, the U.K.’s former Minister of Science-turned businessman and amateur racing driver.
Lord Drayson himself was behind the wheel of B12 69EV electric Le-Mans Prototype to set the new world record.
Describing Drayson Racing Technologies “a laboratory for EV technology, testing it to the most extreme level,” Lord Drayson explained that the victory is not just about the EV’s speed, but also about the EV’s weight.
The EV’s hefty battery poses an issue, because it adds substantial weight. But in order to qualify for the attempt at the electric land speed record, the vehicle had to weigh less than 2,204 pounds (1,000 kg) without the driver.
Lord Drayson said in a statement, “It is not the outright speed of 204.185mph that is most impressive about this record, but the engineering challenge of accelerating a 1,000kg electric vehicle on a short runway over a measured mile.”
How soon the engineering achievements of a special electric racing car will trickle down to the consumer EV remains less clear. But Drayson Racing Technologies, for now, seems happy to take credit for being able to show the world the future potential of electric cars.
Following is a slideshow of Tuesday's record-setting race.
Drayson B12 69/EV race car gets the final tune-up.