Electric hack sets new speed record

Photos: Killacycle Racing

A couple years ago, we told you about Eva Håkansson’s attempt on the sidecar land speed record. Now, with a couple more years of experience and building, she and her team have succeeded in breaking that record and others.

In the last week of August, Håkansson managed 387.328 km/h record in the flying mile in the last week of August. That set a new electric  motorcycle speed record, as well as making her the fastest sidecar in the event, gas or electric. She also held the title of fastest woman on a motorcycle in the world, and had the fastest speed of the 2014 Bonneville Motorcycle Speed Trials.

Håkansson set the speed record piloting the KillaJoule, a 5.6 metre-long sidecar rig put together by KillaCycle Racing. The team is a family effort; crew chief/co-designer/co-owner Bill Dubé, also happens to be her husband. Håkansson’s father, Sven, was senior adviser and also did focused work on the suspension.

KillaJouleKillaJoule was built in Dubé and Håkansson’s two-car garage, with Håkansson doing 80 per cent of the work herself.

The hack was built on a very limited budget; the couple describes themselves as “backyard racers with high-level engineering skills.”

While the KillaJoule’s has a EVO Electric AFM-240 motor that puts out 400 hp, there’s a lot more than pure muscle behind this rig. Dubé and Håkansson are both scientists (she’s a PhD student at the University of Denver, he works with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration), and they’ve put a lot of high-tech thinking into this rig. They’ve also got a sportbike (the ElectroCat) they registered as Sweden’s first street-legal battery bike and ran as Pikes Peak’s first electric bike competitor back in 2010. They’re also working on a 500 hp electric drag bike, the KillaCycle.

You can find more technical details on the KillaJoule here. The battery is a A123Systems lithium nano-phosphate unit, capable of 400 V and 10 kWh. The sidecar rig weighs 700 kg. When the sidecar is attached, it’s 1.4 metres wide. When possible, they power the machine with solar panels, but they juice up the batteries with a biodiesel generator at Bonneville.



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