Electric power isn't just for Nissan Leafs and Teslas anymore.
Having already broken the outright records at both the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb and the Goodwood Festival of Speed, and the electric lap record at the Nürburgring Norschleife, VW is taking its battery-powered hillclimber to China to tackle the infamous Tianmen Mountain Big Gate Road. But before it does, it's taken on an altogether different kind of electric racer.
Nope, not a Formula E racer, though that'd be an interesting matchup to watch go down. This time the ID.R has lined up against a racing drone. Yeah, one of those tiny remote-control quadcopters you might have seen zipping around overhead at your local park. Only this type isn't the kind most private enthusiasts operate. These racing drones can top 85 miles per hour and navigate through the tightest mid-air obstacle courses at speed.
Of course the VW ID.R is capable of much higher speeds than that. It was clocked at over 135 mph at Pikes Peak, and nearly 170 mph at the 'Ring.
Maybe it could go even faster on a long enough straight, at which point it'd leave most any drone in its wake. (Even a military-spec MQ-1 Predator drone can "only" reach 135 mph, after all.) But then they weren't going in a straight line, and this was more of a promo clip than any kind of "official" race. It's still an entertaining exercise, and drives the point home that electric power can do a lot more than a Nissan Leaf, or even a Ludicrous-enable Tesla Model S, can manage in the best of circumstances. Now, about that Formula E showdown....