Update 7/12/2014: The Sunswift team now need help to turn eVe into Australia's first road-registered solar-powered car. Check out their crowd-funding campaign here.
With a speed of 106.966 kilometres an hour, a solar car known as eVe is now officially the fastest electric vehicle over a distance of 500 kilometres in the world - and it was built entirely by undergraduate engineering students from the University of New South Wales (UNSW) in Australia.
The previous record was 73 kilometres an hour, and it stood for 26 years before Sunswift smashed it in July. The Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile, the world motorsport’s governing body, has now updated its official records.
“It's not often you can confidently say you made history before you even graduated,” said Sunswift’s project director and third-year engineering student Hayden Smith in a press release.
eVe was built by Sunswift, UNSW’s solar car racing team, and more than 100 undergraduate students were involved in its world record attempt over the past two years.
eVe is the fifth solar car to be built by the student-led team, and previous models set a Guinness World Record for the fastest solar car, and a world record for the fastest solar powered road trip from Perth to Sydney.
The students are now working on modifying eVe to meet Australian road registration requirements, so that it can be used as a faster and more sustainable solar alternative to current electric vehicles, which are generally powered by electricity generated from fossil fuels. They're now crowd-funding in order to achieve this important next step.
For a group of students, it’s a pretty impressive goal.
“If there is one thing we've learned, it's that you're never too young to make an impact, said Smith.
Want to help support the development of Australia's first road-registered solar-powered car? Find out how here.