It was a big deal when Peugeot's EX1 set the electric vehicle speed record at the Nürburgring Nordschleife with a time of 9.01:33 this past May (video here). In response, Toyota worked hard to make sure that its TMG EV P001 made the run in 7.47.79 at the end of August. There's another all-electric vehicle – one built by university students – that recently lapped the 20.832-kilometer distance in 8.42:72, but it still set a new EV record* for the 'Ring.
The Helsinki Metropolia University of Applied Sciences' Electric RaceAbout may not be quite as fast as the Toyota racer, but the team is still touting its achievement as "a new road legal electric vehicle lap record." The key words there being "road legal," of course. Whatever the technical definition of the record it, we've been behind the RaceAbout's wheel, and we know how fast this beast can go.
Earlier this year, the RaceAbout went round the Nordschleife in 9.40, so this latest attempt is quite an improvement. The 8.42 time was set by German race driver Ralf Kelleners, who had an average speed of 142 kilometers an hour (88.23 miles per hour) and a top speed of 238 km/h (147.9 mph). While doing so, Kelleners used 25.6 kWh, "measured as energy taken from grid to recharge the battery," for total energy consumption of 123 kWh/100 km (or 1230 Wh/km or 123 kWh/62 miles or 1.98 kWh per mile) for the lap. In average driving, the Raceabout uses around 145 Wh/km. The car uses a 33-kWh lithium-titanate battery, so there was more juice left in the pack after the run. See a video of the run after the jump.