Picture this; a stereotypical 17th century British Lord driving an all-electric race car in a powdered wig while sipping tea. Yeah, that’s the image I get when I imagine science minister, entrepreneur, and noble Lord Drayson driving his electric race car in a bid to set the EV land speed record for vehicles under 1,000 kgs.
Stereotypical? Yes, but in all seriousness Lord Drayson is one of the driving forces behind electric race cars, and Drayson racing has invested millions into developing a competitive vehicle as well as launched a contest for their Formula E design. The B12 EV/69 packs 850 horsepower and a 30 kWh package for competition purposes, but weighs in at 1,095 kgs.
Using the same bodywork but making a number of changes, Drayson will detune the drivetrain to 600 horsepower, with a 20 kWh battery that weighs 100 kg less and boasts a more streamlined body. However, it will not be a streamliner per se, maintaining the distinctive track car look.. The current record stands at 175 mph and was set in 1974, though the overall EV speed record rests with the Ohio State University Buckeye Bullet at 307.7 mph.
With 600 horsepower and weighing less than a ton, methinks our tea-sipping Speed Racer will have no problem smashing the current record. The question then is by how much? Place your wages now. For me, if Drayson doesn’t exceed 200 mph, I may be a bit disappointed.