ELECTRIC NüRBURGRING LAP RECORD SMASHED BY THE VOLKSWAGEN I.D. RDate: 2019-06-04
If you want the world to notice, then go and break a lap record at the Nürburgring, in this case, it was the Electric Volkswagen I.D. R.
Let's be honest, I suspect there weren't many – if any – of us who doubted the Volkswagen I.D. R would take the title of the fastest electric car around the Nürburgring. What was surprising, though, was the 40 seconds it smashed off the previous record held by the Nio EP9.
The I.D. R's time of 6:05.336 for the 12.9-mile circuit raised some eyebrows because only the Porsche 919 Evo achieved a faster time at 5:19.55. What's more remarkable is that the VW did it with 'just' 680 horsepower (500 kilowatts) compared to the Nio EP9's frightful 1,340bhp.
We say 'just' because the I.D R has the potential for more power by increasing the output. The reason VW's engineers didn't just turn a knob was due to the need to conserve battery power so the vehicle could get around the 12.9-miles of tarmac.
Basically, to increase speed for the long straights, the labcoats fiddled with the aerodynamics to reduce drag, without adversely affecting the enormous downforce created for its Pikes Peak run. To achieve faster top speed, Volkswagen changed the energy management system and installed smaller front and rear wings.
Porsche factory driver, Romain Dumas, who claimed the 2018 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb record in the same car said, “It’s a good lap time, we didn’t expect it. We were aiming for 6:15.00 but, lap after lap, we just went quicker though. I pushed myself more, and the engineers understood the car better. I think the team deserve this lap time.”
So... how long do you think it'll be before electricity powers a faster lap than fossil fuels? With the rate of evolution of the maturing battery-powered motor industry, I doubt it's far off.