Fully electric drivetrains for the purpose of speed and lap times are trending for manufacturers who are just now entering the EV market. The hybrid setup already proved to the world the benefits of immediate power and monstrous torque in order to get ridiculous performance figures and while Formula E is the only full-racing format as of yet, others are expected to pop up in due course.
Last month, Volkswagen had unveiled a purpose-built, electric racecar that beat the all-time record for the legendary Pikes Peak hill climb by completing the 12.4-mile run in a gut-wrenching 7m58s. The machine and its handler, Romain Dumas, were at Goodwood to give a public demonstration of the hugely impressive VW I.D. R Pikes Peak on Lord March’s stretch of uphill tarmac. In an early run, we witnessed an intense moment when Dumas lost the rear end and was sliding sideways across the grass but managed to reel the machine back onto tarmac without hitting anything. You can watch the brown-pantsing moment below:
But Pikes Peak record holder Romain Duman is a true racer and shrugged it off. On Sunday, the final day of the 2018 Festival of Speed, the VW I.D. R Pikes Peak topped the charts in the timed shootout taking just 43.86 seconds from start to finish. An impressive feat considering it had beaten some of the older but highly competitive vehicles by some margin. It was even quicker in qualifying for the shootout with a time of 43.05 seconds. Dumas made history at Goodwood Festival of Speed by being the first electric-powered winner of the timed shootout. Overall, the winning time was the third-fastest in the event’s 25 year history.
The car that came closest to that time this year was yet another electric vehicle but this one was road-legal. The Nio EP9 holds the title for being the fastest EV to lap the Nürburging Nordschleife and in a complicated way, it also holds the record for the fastest factory-spec road-legal car to lap the track in a time of 6m45s which is still faster than the Porsche 911 GT2 RS. The record was set by Peter Drumbeck at the wheel and the same brilliant man completed the Goodwood hill climb in a matter of 44.32 seconds making it the fastest road-legal factory-spec car on slicks ever at Goodwood FoS.
So, first and second in the official timed shootout at the 2018 Goodwood FoS goes to all-electric hypercars. Yes, one is a purpose-built racecar and the other was limited to just 16 units, but it is a reckoning to those who argue against the performance and thrill available from a battery-powered car.
For anyone still sceptical about the figures, here are a few about these two incredible engineering projects. The Volkswagen I.D. R Pikes Peak has motors producing 670bhp and unspecified torque while the Nio EP9 claims a total output of 1,341bhp and absurd torque figures as well. What makes these cars record breakers is the amount of engineering involved in tackling problems like aerodynamics, power distribution, balance etc. Weight management is a crucial aspect of electric powertrains as the extremely powerful batteries tend to be quite heavy.
Here is the winning run at Goodwood FoS 2018 from Romain Dumas in the VW I.D. R Pikes Peak:
The Rimac Concept One had competed in the timed shootout up Goodwood last year with a time of 54.89 seconds and with the even more ludicrous performance figures of the Rimac C_Two, one can expect the seconds to fall off significantly. Or will the Tesla Roadster take the top spot? Only time will tell. What do you make of the incredible performance of these electric hypercars? Share your thoughts in the comments below and don’t forget to subscribe to The Auto Loons for plenty more updates from the world of cars.