"Big Daddy" Don Garlits is a legend in drag racing. Over the decades he's set a lot of records, and was the first to break hit 200 miles per hour in the quarter-mile (and the eighth-mile, for that matter). Now, at the tender age of 81, he's getting ready to do it again. This time, in an electric dragster.
Lawless EV Racing, the guys behind the world's quickest electric motorcycle, have put together Swamp Rat #37 for Mr Garlits with the express purpose of warping down the track in six seconds at speeds in excess of 200 mph.The elongated machine depends on three Zilla controllers to send 1500 kW – the equivalent of 2012 horsepower – from the custom High Tech Systems battery pack to the General Electric series DC motor.
The project arose after Big Daddy's previous electric dragster experience – some match races in cars with golf cart-like performance – had left him with the impression that EVs are slow. With a little preliminary testing under his belt, Garlits now knows this is not the case.
Scroll on down for video of one test run, along with footage of that match race that provided the impetus for this project. You can see other, slightly clearer, clips here and here. Though the wick wasn't turned up all the way and the vehicle was still incomplete, this latest Swamp Rat seemed to tear up the first 60 feet of asphalt faster than any EV that's come before it. We are looking to seeing the what this latest Swamp Rat will do once it's ready to play for keepsies.