Venturi VBB-3 Sets New Land Speed Record For Electric Cars

UPDATE: the original version of this story mistakenly used kilometers per hour instead of miles per hour. The units of measure have now been corrected. Thanks to sharp eyed reader Travis Russell for pointing out the error. 

The Venturi VBB-3, a 3,000 horsepower battery powered race car, set two new FIA recognized land speed records during this year’s time trials at the Bonneville salt flats in Utah. The VBB-3, otherwise known as the Buckeye Bullet because it is built and developed in association with engineering students at the Ohio State University, set a top speed record of 358 miles per hour. It also claimed the two way land speed record at 341 miles per hour. The LSR record is an average of two one mile miles in opposite directions with an hour between runs. The interval allows time for the battery and other components to cool down after a top speed event. running the course in both directions cancels out any advantage from a tail wind.

Venturi VBB-3 land speed record electric car

Venturi is an electric powertrain manufacturer headquartered in Monaco. It set its first world land speed record in 2009 with a fuel cell powered car that recorded a speed of 293 miles per hour. After that, the company switched its efforts to battery power and enlisted the aid of Ohio State. In 2010, its first battery racer — VBB 2.5 — was driven by Roger Schroer to a top speed of 307 miles per hour. Schroer was back behind the wheel for this year’s record setting attempt.

“Each time I enjoyed driving the car and achieving this performance. But at those speeds you have to focus on your task not on your emotions. I know we can go further. This week the track was good. No main vehicle instability. Much better than the last days during tuning and testing. We always have to be patient and wait for the track to be ready,” said Schroer.

Between 2010 and 2016, the course at Bonneville suffered numerous stretches of bad weather. “It’s a relief because we were waiting for this result for three years,” said Venturi owner Gildo Pallanca Pastor. “Heavy rain and bad weather conditions on the Salt Flats prevented our success. VBB-3 is the most powerful electric car in the world (3000hp). We had to demonstrate that it was also the fastest. It’s done by breaking our own record achieved with the VBB-2.5 in 2010. It shows also that our partnership between students and a manufacturer can bring a lot in this new automotive industry in terms of research and development.”

Venturi also fields a race team in Formula E — the international open wheel racing series for all electric race cars.

Source: Electric Autosport | Image credit: Venturi


Steve Hanley

Closely following the transition from internal combustion to electricity. Whether it's cars, trucks, ships, or airplanes, sustainability is the key. Please follow me on Google + and Twitter.