BMW Group electric car speed record
4x4, concept cars, electric cars, high tech, Motoring News, vehicle technology

0-100km/h in 1.5sec – how the heck did they do it?

  • BMW helps student team crack global record
  • Record speed reached in only 30 metres
  • Swiss air base used for the record run
BMW Group electric car speed record
TEAM CELEBRATION: The car and the people – the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology team that now holds the world electric car 0-100km/h record. Image: BMW Group

MUNICH, Germany and ZURICH, Switzerland – From 0-100km/h in 1.513 seconds – a student team from the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (ETH) in Zurich has broken the acceleration record for electric cars.

The students, aided by the BMW Group, and others from Lucerne University developed the car and set the record as part of their preparation for an annual student tech meeting.

The car reached 100km/h in less than 30 metres on a military airbase near Zurich, breaking the previous record of 1.779 seconds.

BMW Group electric car speed record
STUDENTS’ SUPERCAR: The BMW Group electric car that has taken the world acceleration speed record for battery-cars. Image: BMW

The car, much of it made of carbon-fibre reinforced platic, weighs only 168kg and has four student-developed wheel-hub motors transferring 150kW to the tarmac through all-wheel drive technology.

The team is now in the pound seats for the upcoming Formula Student Germany meeting at the Hockenheimring from August 8-14 during which 115 teams from more than 25 countries will compete in race cars – most after long development.


In addition to vehicles with combustion engines, 40 battery-powered race cars will be fighting for victory – though the winner will not be defined only by speed. Design, cost-budgeting and business model must also convince a jury of experts from industry and commerce.

In 2015 the AMZ Racing Team from ETH, supported by the BMW Group, was second in the overall ranking, making it a candidate for the 2016 podium, too.

The BMW Group is the main sponsor of the competition. Since 2010 it has also supported young engineers as a team sponsor and will sponsor three Formula Student Electric cars again in August – Munich University, TU Dresden and AMZ Racing.

READ more BMW features on Carman’s Corner

BMW supplies the teams with financial support, advice from its engineers and access to manufacturing technology. For instance, the automaker told The Corner in a media release, on July 28 2016 the group will meet during a BMW Driving Experience event in Maisach to tune their cars down to the smallest detail and exchange ideas with their BMW mentors.

They will also get tips and tricks during driver training from BMW Driving Experience instructors.

The BMW-supported teams will also receive comprehensive support in building and designing their race cars with BMW employees as mentors.


Oliver Ferschke, head of BMW Group human resources marketing, told The Corner: “In Formula Student students apply knowledge gained from their studies to everyday practice in a unique way.

“In the process, social and key competences as well as practical know-how and business expertise are acquired and deepened so we can help young engineers to attain important qualifications and enjoy themselves doing it.”

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