Range has always been a limiting factor for people transitioning from traditional ICE vehicles to EVs. Various ways to counter this are by either including a massive battery pack or substantially reducing the weight of such vehicles. These solutions come with their own set of practical issues, preventing EV makers from offering higher ranges for their customers.
Accepting the challenge, TUfast Eco, an initiative by students at the Technical University of Munich (TUM), has become the longest-range EV in the world with a tested figure of 1,598 miles (2573.79 kilometers) on a single battery charge.
The crew competed for the new world record at the Munich airport as part of the IAA Mobility show. The previous Guinness world record for the maximum range provided by an EV was 999 miles (1608 kilometers). The team covered this figure on the fourth day of their drive, and with enough charge left, the car went on to achieve the record-winning sprint in six days with over 99 hours on the road.
"With the world record, our students are not only demonstrating sporting ambition. There is more behind it: They want to shape the future of mobility sustainably," said Markus Blume, Bavarian Minister of Science, in a statement.
TUfast Eco team's "muc022" car consumed only 0.6 kilowatt hours to drive 62 miles (100 kilometers). To put the figures into perspective, extremely economical series EVs consume approximately 13 kWh for covering the same distance.
Low weight and aerodynamics
The student team primarily focussed on reducing weight to make their new version go further. Using carbon fiber composite material enabled the monocoque shell to weigh just 18.6 kilograms. The muc022 tips the scale north of 170 kilograms in all the other components. "Concentrating primarily on aerodynamic design and lightweight construction, the young engineers installed a larger battery with an output rating of 15.5-kilowatt hours to bring the vehicle up to world-record class," said TUM.
Student team's EV becomes world's longest-range electric car