Electric supercar team aims for UK first in lead-up to world record attempt across the Americas

May 27, 2010
The Racing Green Endurance Vehicle

Students driving an electric supercar will tonight try to be the first to drive an all-electric vehicle around the M25 twice on one battery charge, in the lead up to the team's attempt to cross the Americas in July this year and break a world record.

The Racing Green Endurance (RGE) team, from Imperial College London, aim to drive two laps around the M25 in their specially modified electric Radical SRZERO supercar. This would break the current record held by a team in a Tesla electric car, which did one lap around the M25 on one charge.

The M25 attempt forms part of a long-term strategy by the RGE team to test the performance of SRZERO before they embark on a trip across North and South America in July. The team plan to be the first in the world to drive an electric vehicle the entire length of the Pan American Highway, which is the longest road on Earth.

The team, which comprises undergraduates, postgraduates and alumni from Imperial's Faculty of Engineering, aim to travel 26,000 kilometres along the Pan-American Highway, starting at the northern tip of Alaska and finishing at the southern tip of South America. Part of the project will see them assessing the performance and endurance capabilities of over long distances. They also hope that driving their car across two continents will raise awareness along the way about the benefits of electric vehicles and dispel the of as slow and unattractive, with a limited range.

Alexander Schey, RGE Project Manager who is a fourth year undergraduate from the Department of Mechanical Engineering at Imperial College London, says:

"We'll face all sorts of engineering challenges during the drive from North America to South America. There are no emergency breakdown services in the jungles of Colombia or the frozen wastes of Alaska, so we need to do as much testing as possible of the car before our Pan-American journey begins. By driving the car around the M25 twice, we'll be able to kill two birds with one stone, further testing the SRZERO's endurance capability while hopefully going further than any other all-electric car has managed before around the M25."

The team designed, integrated and installed the different components into the electric supercar, which can accelerate from zero to 100 km per hour in seven seconds, reaching a top speed of 200 km per hour. The car has an average running cost of one penny per mile and a range of approximately 400 kilometres before the battery needs recharging.

The Racing Green Endurance project runs alongside the wider Imperial Racing Green initiative (IRG), which is training students to become the engineers who will develop the next generation of zero emission vehicles in the future. The IRG project is an initiative of the Energy Futures Lab, which is the College's hub for interdisciplinary energy research.

Professor Nigel Brandon, Director of the Energy Futures Lab at Imperial College London, says: "The need to reduce the UK's carbon emissions has never been greater. To meet current government targets by 2050, we need to refine a range of technologies including electric vehicles, which will help us move towards a low carbon economy. Apart from being great fun, we hope that the Racing Green Endurance project will show the world the leaps and bounds that electric vehicles are making. This project is also helping the next generation of UK engineers to gain valuable experience in the field, which is vital for their careers and the future of the British manufacturing."

Explore further: Website shines light on renewable energy resources

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Electric vehicles given thumbs up

May 19, 2010

The first trial of electric vehicles in North East England has been a major success, leaving hundreds of drivers ready to make the switch to low carbon transport. Newcastle University in conjunction with Cenex, the UK's ...

Drag racing goes green as US electric cars shine

Sep 06, 2009

Far from the fury of traditional race-tracks, spectators got a glimpse of the future as they watched electric cars rev up, and silently bomb off around the Mason-Dixon Dragway.

Green machine drives for ultra fuel savings

Apr 19, 2005

This is what cars of the future or at least a family’s second car should look like, according to University of Queensland students. It's called the UltraCommuter - a clean, light, solar-electric concept car ...

Toyota unveils 'green' sports car

Oct 06, 2009

Toyota unveiled Tuesday a new lightweight, sporty concept car inspired by an iconic coupe from the 1980s, saying its vision of the future was both mean and green.

Mitsubishi rolls out new electric car in Hong Kong

May 20, 2010

Japan's Mitsubishi Motors unveiled its i-MiEV electric car in Hong Kong on Thursday, its first foreign launch of the vehicle as competition accelerates in the clean-energy auto sector.

Recommended for you

Website shines light on renewable energy resources

Dec 18, 2014

A team from the University of Arizona and eight southwestern electric utility companies have built a pioneering web portal that provides insight into renewable energy sources and how they contribute to the ...

Better software cuts computer energy use

Dec 18, 2014

An EU research project is developing tools to help software engineers create energy-efficient code, which could reduce electricity consumption at data centres by up to 50% and improve battery life in smart ...

Cook farm waste into energy

Dec 17, 2014

It takes some cooking, but turning farm waste into biofuels is now possible and makes economic sense, according to preliminary research from the University of Guelph.

Developing a reliable wind 'super grid' for Europe

Dec 17, 2014

EU researchers are involved in the development of a pan-European 'super grid' capable of dispersing wind power across Member States. This will bring more renewable energy into homes and businesses, help reduce ...

Boeing 737 factory to move to clean energy

Dec 16, 2014

Boeing said Tuesday it plans to buy renewable energy credits to replace fossil-fuel power at the factory in Washington state where it assembles its 737 commercial airplanes.

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

robz
not rated yet May 29, 2010
specs look good, car looks good and the dudes in the pic seem to be having a good time =)

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.