Detractors of all-electric vehicles, beware. A group of German automotive students has set a new distance record for EVs — 1,013 miles on a single charge — and may point the way to future battery-powered cars that won’t give owners “range anxiety.”
The Schluckspecht — “boozer” or “heavy drinker” in colloquial German — was a collaborative effort among students at the University of Applied Science at Offenburg, Germany and other organizations. Named after previous test vehicles that guzzled gas, the prototype electric car uses several interesting design and operational factors to help the German team of scientists to reach the new distance milestone.
For one, the experimental EV uses lightweight materials to keep the car’s weight low — about 700 pounds. Two electric motors, housed inside the car’s wheels, propel the car using energy supplied by 14 lithium-cobalt batteries.
Unfortunately, to maintain an aerodynamic shape and low weight, the boozer can carry only a driver. And it took a team of four drivers more than 36 hours, traveling at an average speed of 28 mph, to push the car past the four-digit mileage without recharging.
While such constraints probably wouldn’t work in the “real world,” the technology used in the German prototype could make its way into next-generation electric cars. The in-wheel hub motors, for example, are being further developed by the University of Offenburg and a German firm, Evomotiv.
Team Schluckspecht website
“Boozer” the Electric Car Smashes Distance Record, Driving 1,000 Miles on a Single Charge [Popular Science]
Electric Car Travels More Than 1000 Miles on Single Charge [Automotive.com]