EV West Aims For New Electric Speed Record With a Tesla-Powered Lakester
There are high chances that we may have a new record holder this timeby Sidd Dhimaan, on LISTEN 03:43
Although the infiltration into the market will take time, I think it’s high time all of us accepted that EVs are no more a ‘niche’. It’s not just the automakers that are investing in electrification; even aftermarket companies have realized that this is the future and they are adapting to the new ‘electrified’ culture. One such company, EV West, has taken this up a notch by using its technical knowhow to break the land speed record for an electric vehicle. Can it break the record set 23 years back?
EV West Aims To Set A New Record
Internal combustion engines still have some time before they die (EVs accounted for just 1.6-percent of total vehicles sold in 2019 in the States), but the process of electric vehicles taking over has begun.
EV West, a California-based company that sells conversion kits, electric car parts, and charging station solutions is a part of this revolution.
The company has decided to carry over the hot rod culture to the EV era and has taken the first step towards it. EV West has built an electric streamliner that will take part in the 2020 Bonneville Speed Week later this week.
The company has built a Tesla-powered Lakester and is aiming to break the electric speed record Electric Vehicle E2 Class. Called the ‘Electraliner’, EV West has worked on this in collaboration with Hickey Speed. The vehicle is based on a custom tube-chassis and features an aerodynamic body. It will feature 294 individual Panasonic battery cells for a total of 357.7 volts that will send current to the Tesla motor, which in turn powers this vehicle. We don’t know the weight of the Electraliner yet, but we do know it weighs between 1,100 and 2,200 pounds, which is the criteria to compete in the E2 Class.
EV West hasn’t revealed a lot of details about it yet, but Jalopnik noted that the guys plan to haul a small solar array out to the Salt Flats for charging purposes. This will help keep the three swappable batteries charge between the speed runs. The company said that it plans to use only 50-percent of each battery as the charge depletes quickly after that. Also, the batteries will be cooled using five gallons of ice water after every run. How about that!
Who Holds The Current Record?
The current record in the E2 Class is held by Ed Rannberg. He recorded a two-run average of 213 mph back in 1997 and became the first person to breach the 200 mph mark in an EV in this class.
The ‘Lightning Rod’ that he used for the run was equipped with heavy flooded lead-acid battery technology. Quite a name, that. If I ever built an EV prototype, I’m going to call it Car-man Electra! This, by the way, isn’t the world record for an EV. The actual record at Bonneville is held by Buckeye Bullet, which recorded a speed of 314.9 mph in 2004! Given the class that EV West is competing in, it looks unlikely that this record will be broken.
The Bonneville Speed Week is set to take place from August 8 to August 14 at the Bonneville Salt Flats in Utah. EV West has said that the details about the EV will be shared after the Speed Week. Do you think the Electraliner will be able to break the Lightning Rod’s record? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.