World's First Electric Two-Seater Race car being unveiled at COP26

02 Nov 2021

By: Sport Industry Group

Envision Virgin Racing, in association with Johnson Matthey, are unveiling the world’s first electric two-seater formula race car at the UN Climate Change Conference (COP26).

The prototype electric racer has been conceived to help accelerate the transition to a net zero future and the advance to clean, sustainable technologies that enable the mass public adoption of electric vehicles.

The electric two-seater race car features full-size lithium-ion battery cells using Johnson Matthey’s eLNO cathode material technology – a family of nickel-rich cathode materials that offers enhanced driving range and battery lifetime.

eLNO has around 20 percent greater energy density than electric vehicle cathode material technology on the road today. This means longer travel distance between recharging and a maximum power output of 250 kW at the wheels (around 326 horsepower), a top speed of 240 km/h (149 mph) and 0-60mph in 3.2seconds.

Envision Virgin Racing’s Managing Director and Chief Technology Officer, Sylvain Filippi said: “The two-seater race car has been specifically designed to test and push the battery performance to its extreme. This battery technology is unlike anything else we’ve seen before, and we wanted to create a prototype car that would really put it through its paces and showcase its huge potential.”

Johnson Matthey’s eLNO technology is on schedule to be commercially manufactured in 2024, with the batteries being earmarked as suitable for the performance requirements of large passenger cars and SUVs.

The electric two-seater race car will make its full debut in the Blue Zone at COP26, which takes place in Glasgow from 31 October – 12 November. Its introduction forms part of the Envision Virgin Racing Team’s ‘Race Against Climate Change’ sustainability programme, which aims to inspire generations to tackle climate change.