This past weekend was the 2014 Refuel races at Laguna Seca. The event was open to the all Electric Vehicles (EVs) which included OEM’s, electric conversions as well as purpose-built all-electric race cars. The cool part was the participants received free access to charging stations in between their track sessions! Imagine going to the track and having your race fuel provided for free?
At the end of the day were a series of time trials for the three electric classes. Michael Bream drove the EV West electric M3 to a 1st in the EV Conversion Class, and set the 2nd fastest lap time of the day behind a Tesla Roadster. The M3 even managed to take a win over favorites in the prototype class, and the ever threatening Tesla Model S. Here’s their winning lap around Laguna.
This the same E36 M3 that EV west built for the race up Pikes Peak in 2012. With 342 horsepower and 850 ft-lbs of torque at just 600 RPMs, it was near perfect for the hillclimb but was equally suited for the race at Laguna. The driveline costs roughly $40,000 and is based around twin Warp 11″ DC Motors and an 80 cell CALB 180Ah(LiFePO4) Prismatic Cell battery pack. The car weighs roughly 3800 pounds and uses a 2 speed power glide to put the energy to the wheels. And I was fortune enough to take it out for test drive back when they first built it. The car is ridiculously fast, yet super easy to drive. EV West built a near perfect electric conversion for competition.