Alternative fuel racers like Oliver Young are taking clean racing to new levels. Over the weekend Young’s “Black Current” EV Beetle dragster was the first street-bodied EV to run the quarter mile in 9 seconds, an impressive feat for sure.
Black Current first made waves over the summer when this unassuming 1960’s Beetle obliterated a Tesla Roadster on the drag strip. Since then we’ve heard little from Oliver and his brother Sam, though the pair have apparently been very busy. Ask anybody who has ever done serious drag racing, and they’ll tell you that getting into the 9-second range in the quarter mile requires some serious effort, both on the part of the racers and the vehicle. With Oliver behind the wheel though, Black Current was able to blitz down the 1,320 at the UK's Santa Pod Raceway in 9.82 seconds at 133 mph, followed by a second run of 9.51 seconds at 135 mph, proof that this was no minor fluke. This is a big deal for EV racers, who have an uphill battle convincing the established drag racers that there’s a lot of performance potential in electric cars.
These two runs have also established Black Current as the first street-bodied all-electric dragster to reach the 9-second mark, as well as the fastest car of its kind.. A “street-bodied” dragster is a vehicle that retains the production car’s body as opposed to going for a body-on-frame fiberglass fixture like that of the world’s fastest EV dragster, the Current Eliminator, which can run the same distance in around 7 seconds at almost 160 mph.
Black Current appears to have beaten Team Haiyin’s Warp Factor II 1981 EV Camaro dragster to the 9-second milestone, which raced this weekend down in Florida (though an information blockade seems to be keeping the details of this event under wraps.) With more and more individuals and companies getting involved in EV drag racing, it is only a matter of time before these events become more mainstream. We’re on the verge of an EV racing revolution, and I plan on having a front row seat.
Chris DeMorro is a writer and gearhead who loves all things automotive, from hybrids to HEMIs. You can read about his slow descent into madness at Sublime Burnout or follow his non-nonsensical ramblings on Twitter @harshcougar.