Venturi likes to take up a challenge. The Monaco-based manufacturer of electric sports cars and competitor in the all-electric FIA Formula E Championship is also known for its current land speed record with an electric vehicle. Set in 2010, the Venturi BB-2.5 reached 495 km/h. But improvements made on the new machine might take speed trails to a whole new level.
This project was initiated five years ago and is carried out in partnership with the Ohio State University, enabling them to set the benchmark in the field of high-performance electric vehicles at the Bonneville Salt Flats in the United States.
It’s not glory that attracts the team of top engineers to get listed in the records, but Venturi wisely uses its programme to test electric powertrains and components in extreme conditions. It represents a thorough R&D programme that moves Venturi forward.
There are more challenges to tackle. A Citroën Berlingo powered by Venturi set an unassisted distance record for an electric vehicle: covering 14,900 kilometres from Shanghai to Paris. A next journey was set in Africa where access to electricity is limited. 6,000 kilometres were covered; including 600 km of rough terrain was overcome. But can you also imagine sending a vehicle to Antarctica? Venturi likes to push the boundaries of technology and will soon send a purpose built electric vehicle to the coldest place on earth to help scientists carrying out their research safely.
New FIA speed record?
The ‘Venturi Buckeye Bullet’ also carries the name of ‘La Jamais Contente’ (the never satisfied), honouring Camille Jenatzy’s electric car, the first vehicle that breached the 100 km/h barrier already in 1899.
Venturi reached 487 km/h at the Bonneville Salt Flats with a hydrogen fuel cell powered vehicle in 2009 and sharpened its record to 495 km/h a year later. That one was set with state-of-the-art battery technology under the hood.
This week, Venturi aims to set a new FIA electric world speed record with its VBB-3, a four wheel drive 2,200 kW (3,000 hp) machine with a total torque up to 2,800 Nm. This is a significant improvement for the vehicle that is 11.35 metres in length.
Any length of the course can measure the land speed record. Only the middle mile and kilometre will be timed and the average of two runs (both directions) will determine the average speed. Both runs must be achieved within one hour to qualify for FIA certification.
Roger Schroer will pilot the Venturi VVB-3. The driving instructor from the Transportation Research Centre in Ohio is one of the 60 members of the 300 mph Club, passing the 300 miles per hour (482,8 km/h) on an official timed run. Venturi expects that Schroer might soon enter the very elite 400 mph Club, now consisting of just seven drivers.
Follow the Venturi’s developments live on twitter. ElectricAutosport.com will follow with a report.
Image courtesy of Venturi Automobiles