Carbon Fiber EV Racer Rockets To 60 MPH In 1.5 Seconds

Goodwood Festival of Speed / 6 Comments

McMurtry's EV missile boasts twin fans generating 4,400 pounds of downforce.

We all know EV street cars are insanely fast. Off the line, a Tesla Model X Plaid can embarrass many supercars, and that's a seven-passenger SUV! Aside from the performance data of the instant-on torque, EV tech can be applied in innovative ways to build fast track cars and this compact McMurtry Automotive racer we discovered last year built by former F1 engineers is proof.

Dubbed the McMurtry Speirling, the race car might not have much experience racing but it has been purpose-built with only one short-term goal in mind: to take the Goodwood Festival of Speed Hillclimb record from Volkswagen.

Mind you, all the torque and power in the McMurtry race car needs to be harnessed properly with downforce and traction. The unique racer has more than an entire car's curb weight of downforce available at the flick of a button and a 0-60 mph time of under 1.5 seconds.

McMurtry Automotive
McMurtry Automotive
McMurtry Automotive

Bankrolled by Sir David McMurtry, the team of engineers, fabricators, and test drivers started work in 2016 to rewrite the rules of going fast on race circuits of the world. The car dubbed the McMurtry Speirling (meaning: thunderstorm or violence, strife or contention in old Irish Gaelic) is now "in it, to win it." While the name seems questionable, the track performance-oriented goals of the McMurtry are quite quite clear: rethink the deisgn, EV tech and capability of a race car to showcase the capabilities of the engineers, and win.

"Having previously enjoyed demonstration runs in an F1 car at Goodwood Festival of Speed, this year, I'm looking forward to making my competitive hillclimb debut." says former F1, IndyCar driver and Lead Development Driver, Max Chilton. "The challenge now is to translate confidence and speed from testing on conventional circuits onto Goodwood's tight, undulating hillclimb course. "

McMurtry Automotive
McMurtry Automotive
McMurtry Automotive

No surprise that a McLaren F1 car at top-level motorsports was able to hold the FoS Hillclimb record for 20 years but the upset came in 2019 with German EV tech. Yes, back in 2019 the Volkswagen ID.R set the Goodwood 1.16 mile Hillclimb record at a lofty 41.18 seconds (but ran a shocking 39.90 in practice).

Downforce is the key to challenging the VW ID.R record here using an electric fan system that purportedly generates double the Speirling's weight. The car itself weighs under 2,200 pounds (1,000 kg) but the downforce the fans generate exceeds 4,400 pounds (2,000kg)! The benefits don't stop because this technology doesn't require the drag of wings, splitters, fins, and high numbers of canards, meaning the silhouette of the McMurtry Speirling can remain low and slippery. Although thoroughly modernized, this F1 fan-tech was banned in the 1970s but anything goes in Hillclimb.

Thanks to all that instant downforce, the instant torque from the drive motors can be fully deployed. And the result is an astonishing 0-60 mph time of under 1.5 seconds and a top speed of 150 mph (capped due to the hillclimb gearbox selection).

McMurtry Automotive
McMurtry Automotive
McMurtry Automotive

Beyond the twin fans, there is a huge amount of advanced tech and materials used in the McMurtry Speirling. The chassis is a monocoque single-seater with carbon fiber components and carbon ceramic brakes. The end result is 1000bhp/ton (2000 pounds) power-to-weight ratio with more downforce than a current F1 car can generate. And although the motor and battery details are sparse, we expect this 60 kWh Molicel battery generating over 800V to crank north of 1000 horsepower.

We can hear the "but it's an electric car, it doesn't make cool noises," argument but McMurtry engineers solved that too. With the fans and electric powertrain screaming, the McMurtry Speirling bellows 100 dB of race car noises. And CarBuzz will be at Goodwood FoS to head the warp speed record attempt June 23-26.

McMurtry Automotive
McMurtry Automotive

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