Battery-powered Buckeye Bullet aiming for land speed record

Published April 30, 2013


Ohio State University has a need for speed, but keeps it clean.

A team from OSU’s Center for Automotive Research is planning to break the world land speed record for electric vehicles next year with a streamlined car known as the VBB-3, or Venturi Buckeye Bullet 3.

Built in collaboration with Venturi, a boutique electric car company based in Monaco, the VBB-3 is a 38-foot-long all-wheel-drive battery-powered vehicle with 3,000 hp, making it the most powerful EV ever made.

The team is aiming to hit 600 km/h (373 mph) on Utah’s Bonneville Salt Flats later this year, and 700 km/h (435 mph) in 2014.

To carry enough energy to do that, the VBB-3 uses a lithium-phosphate battery pack comprised of 2,000 cells that weighs over 3,500 pounds.

It will be piloted by Roger Schroer, a test driver from the Transportation Research Center in East Liberty, Ohio -- an automotive proving ground that boasts a 7.5-mile high speed oval test track where cars can be pushed to speeds well over 200 mph.

The VBB-3 will go after the U.S. speed record in August, and the world record in September. But even if it comes up short, OSU will still be on top.

Its predecessor, the VBB-2.5, is the current record holder at 307 mph, set in Bonneville back in 2010.

Apparently, some needs are never satisfied.