Formula E car breaks Guinness World Records with new 218 kmph top speed indoors

McLaren driver Jake Hughes hit a top speed of 218.71 kmph at the ExCeL London events arena in the GENBETA electric race car, beating the previous reco
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McLaren driver Jake Hughes hit a top speed of 218.71 kmph at the ExCeL London events arena in the GENBETA electric race car, beating the previous record by over 50 kmph
McLaren driver Jake Hughes hit a top speed of 218.71 kmph at the ExCeL London events arena in the GENBETA electric race car, beating the previous record by over 50 kmph

In a major milestone for electric motorsport, Formula E drivers Jake Hughes set the new Guinness World Record for the fastest speed achieved in a vehicle driven indoors. Hughes, a driver for the NEOM McLaren Formula E Team, hit a top speed of 218.71 kmph at the ExCeL London events arena in the GENBETA electric race car. He beat the previous top speed record by over 50 kmph.

The GENBETA project is a collaboration between Formula E, the FIA and championship partners SABIC and Hankook, who made the record attempt possible. The single-seater Formula E race car went through major modifications to make the top speed record possible. This included an increased power output of 400 kW (536 bhp), as against the standard 350 kW (469 bhp) on the standard Formula E race car.

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The GENBETA electric race car was updated to an all-wheel drive configuration to improve acceleration and grip levels on the indoor track. Hankook offered its new softer iON Race tyre allowing faster warm-up and better peak grip. Other enhancements include 3D-printed front wing endplates, wheel fins and a wind deflector with circular, more sustainable thermoplastic solutions developed by SABIC. All the upgrades were made “to optimise aerodynamics for enhanced straight-line speed."

The record attempt was done in a ‘Duels’ format with Formula E drivers Jake Hughes and Mahindra Racing driver Lucas di Grassi engaged in a head-to-head battle. Both drivers managed to pass the previous indoor land speed record of 165.2 kmph during the practice runs.

Formula E race car Guinness World Records
The GENBETA electric race car used to set the top speed record received several upgrades including more power, all-wheel drive, and aerodynamic improvements
Formula E race car Guinness World Records
The GENBETA electric race car used to set the top speed record received several upgrades including more power, all-wheel drive, and aerodynamic improvements

To set the official indoor land-speed record, the GENBETA race car had to set off from a static start and come to a complete halt inside one continuous building structure.

The drivers started the battle from a standstill and navigated a 130-degree turn at 40 kmph before accelerating across a 346-metre straight. The ExCeL London indoor track measures 2.09 km in length and is unique to the motorsport world with it being partially inside and outside the events arena. The venue will play host to the final two races of the 2023 Formula E World Championship scheduled on July 29-30, 2023.

First Published Date: 29 Jul 2023, 14:10 PM IST
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