Electric motors and lithium battery packs have come a long way in the last couple of years. They still have a lot of potential and a long way to go, but electric cars are already breaking records -- including on the race track. An electric Radical SR8 entered in the NSW SuperSports championship has decimated its petrol-powered equivalents not once but twice in the last couple of race meetings.
With ex-V8 Supercar driver Garth Walden at the wheel, the ELMOFO car built by Newcastle's Solar Power Australia is capable of 0-100km/h in 3.5 seconds and 0-160km/h in 6.5 seconds on to a top speed of 265km/h, without any gearing -- power is channeled to the rears with a single-speed limited slip diff.
Those specs, the electric setup and Walden's driving has seen the car win two out of three races comprising the fourth round of the NSW SuperSports Championship, being the only electric car in a field of fuel-burning V8s. The stock Radical SR8 is no slouch, weighing a spritely 680kg with a high-revving 2.7L V8 pushing around about 400kW, and this achievement could well the a world first result -- extremely impressive.
The electric racer has more power and torque than its petrol counterparts, but is a little heavier as a result of the battery pack and twin motors. Apparently the massive torque from zero RPM means the ELMOFO Radical can be a little bit of a handful on a twisty track with cold tyres, but clearly not enough of a handful to put the racer behind its dinosaur-burning competition.
Here's some great onboard footage from an earlier race. I've driven a Radical SR3, the SR8's much friendlier sibling, and it was already mind-bendingly fast, so I can't even fathom how quick the torquey electric SR8 would be. Congratulations to the ELMOFO team! [ELMOFO]