With three world records, is Rolls-Royce’s Spirit of Innovation the fastest EV?
Rolls-Royce Holdings announced on Friday that their electric plane is the world’s fastest electric vehicle, marking Spirit of Innovation the fastest EV in the world. The British multinational aerospace and defence company (not to be confused with Rolls-Royce Motor Cars) said it had submitted data to the Federation Aeronautique Internationale (FAI), which oversees and verifies world records in aeronautics and astronautics.
Reaching a maximum speed of 623 kilometers (a bit over 387 miles) per hour, the firm stated that this achievement of the “world’s fastest all-electric vehicle” accolade would be submitted, giving Spirit of Innovation the fastest EV title. The company will file three world record claims with the Fédération Aéronautique Internationale. These include a top speed of 555.9 km/h over 3 kilometers, a top speed of 532.1 km/h over 15 kilometers, and a climb to 3,000 meters in 202 seconds.
The Spirit of Innovation reached a top speed of 555.9kph over three kilometers at 15:45 (GMT) on November 16, 2021, shattering the previous record by 213.04kph. Further flights at the UK Ministry of Defence’s Boscombe Down experimental aircraft testing site saw the plane reach 532.1 kph over 15 kilometers, which is 292.8 kph faster than the previous record. With a time of 202 seconds, it also beat the previous record for the fastest ascent to 3,000 meters by 60 seconds.
The Spirit of Innovation is part of the project “Accelerating the Electrification of Flight” which is funded by the Aerospace Technology Institute in partnership with the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy and Innovate UK. The UK Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng applauded, “Rolls-Royce’s revolutionary Spirit of Innovation aircraft is yet more proof of the UK’s enviable credentials when it comes to innovation. This record will show the potential of electric flight and help to unlock the technologies that could make it part of everyday life.”
Rolls-Royce states that whether it’s an electric vertical takeoff and landing (eVTOL) or a commuter aircraft, the company can provide a complete electric propulsion system to their customers. The properties that air-taxis require from batteries are comparable to what is in development to make Spirit of Innovation the fastest EV by reaching the speeds that it did today.