Electric GT, an all-electric racing championship using only Tesla Model S sedans, unveiled its modified version of the Model S this week ahead of an official debut next week on the island of Ibiza. The racing series is marketing itself as “the first 100% zero emissions GT championship”.
They will be using the long discontinued Tesla Model S P85+, renamed ‘EDT Car V1.3’, modified for racing by EGT engineering. When announcing the new racing series in March 2016, the group behind it, Electric GT Holdings, confirmed having already secured 10 vehicles for the 10 teams competing in the championship.
Tesla offers several higher performance versions of the Model S, but Electric GT insisted on using the discontinued P85+. Apparently, it’s because the P85+ is the last non-all-wheel-drive performance Model S. Agustin Payá, Technical Director for Electric GT Holdings, said about the decision:
“Rear-wheel drive cars have traditionally been preferred for track racing for many reasons ranging from driver preference through to better cornering characteristics and weight distribution. In the case of the rear-wheel versus all-wheel drive, there’s a whole lot less complexity to deal with when it comes to quick repairs and maintenance.”
The company released a sneak peek of the vehicle ahead of the official debut next week:
As you can see from the pictures, Electric GT stripped down the interior and probably managed to reduce the weight by a few hundred pounds, but at the original announcement, they said that they kept the original powertrain of the car.
Tesla’s vehicles are really not made for track racing. They are good for short bursts of powerful acceleration, but the battery pack is the limiting factor. We are talking about dragging a 4,500+ lbs vehicle on asphalt at high-speed. It puts a strain on the battery pack and it goes into lower power mode to help the cooling system when pushed too hard.
It will be interesting to see how Electric GT manages to work around the limitation.
Maybe they can learn something from the Tesla Model S that set a new record for a production electric vehicle at the Pikes Peak Hill Climb. A good old ice bath:
While Electric GT says that it didn’t modify the powertrain, it did claim to have strengthen suspension, braking cooling and steering as well as reducing overall weight.
The company will officially unveil the car on Tuesday the 27th of September at 6pm on the waterfront in the Ibiza Marina.
They also released a trailer this week: