Electric cars can be pretty polarizing. But I think we can all agree that insane cars like the Bugatti Chiron are friggin’ amazing. There is a visceral excitement that comes from being in a vehicle that’s pushing the edge of what’s possible in terms of both design and performance.
The Chiron blurs the line between engineering and art. But what if I told you that there are a bunch of electric cars that are just as insane if not more so?
This list is going to cover 10 absolutely wild electric cars just to show what kind of variety and insanity is out there. In fact, we have everything from garage builds to one-off racecars and specialty concepts.
Dendrobium D1 – Stealth Fighter
Let’s start off right out the gate with something that’s just mind-bogglingly fast and is a car that’s probably the most radical design for a car this side of the silver screen. You probably haven’t heard of Vanda Electrics unless you drive an electric mobility scooter because that’s what they built before they decided to build a hypercar, and name it after a flower.
An orchid, actually, called the Dendrobium. Why? Because being a little bit insane is just a thing among hypercar designers. And make no mistake, this electric car is a hypercar. It’s got a 0-to-60 time that would embarrass a new Corvette and wild looks that remind me of a Ferrari crossed with a stealth fighter jet.
What’s really crazy is that this insane car was actually being designed all the way back in 1990. I can’t even plan what I’m going to have for breakfast tomorrow and this random little scooter company was dreaming up electric hypercars 20 years ago, just waiting for motor technology to catch up with their dreams.
Want one? Me too. It’s a shame they cost nearly the same as a Veyron. And, let’s be honest, even though they have 1,800 horsepower, I think we can do better. I think there’s an electric car out there with over 2,000 horsepower, and it’s called the Owl.
Aspark Owl – Who? Who?
Aspark is a tiny Japanese company that decided in 2017 to, you know, just go ahead and build the world’s fastest-accelerating production car. No, not the world’s fastest-accelerating electric car in production, although it’s also that, but the fastest-accelerating vehicle in production.
How fast? Let’s start with the competition. The Bugatti Chiron can make it to 60 miles per hour in 2.4 seconds, but that’s not as fast as the Dodge SRT Demon, which manages a supercar-destroying 2.1-second 0-to-60 time. That’s amazingly fast and incredibly impressive, but the Owl would leave it at the light. The four-engine 2,000-horsepower electric car hit 100 kilometers per hour in just 1.9 seconds, which gives it a 0-to-60 time of about 1.7 seconds, more than four-tenths of a second faster than the Demon.
It’s also, in my opinion, really nice to look at. But being nice to look at doesn’t win competitions. So, let’s talk about something that’s a serious winner.
Pikes Peak VW I.D. R – Record Smasher
If you aren’t familiar with Pikes Peak, well, you should be. Those of you who remember Gran Turismo will remember the Red Escudo, also known as the best rally car you could get for beating the computer. But gearheads of all types have been racing up the Colorado mountain since long before “Monster Tajima” started shattering records in 900-horsepower Suzukis.
Now, Nobuhiro Tajima is a legendary driver, and one of the very first people to take a car up Pikes Peak in under 10 minutes. But now there’s a new kid on the block, a kid driving an electric Volkswagen. There’s a lot of insanity concerning the I.D. R, like the fact that it only makes 670 horsepower, which is like half what the Suzuki it took the record from had. Or there’s the fact that it was Volkswagen’s first electric racecar and it broke records on its first high-speed run.
Did I say broke? I meant shattered. The previous record, set in 2013, was 8:13. The I.D. R did it in 7:57. You know, because electric cars are only good for the quarter-mile and will never compete with combustion engines on long courses.
Speaking of quarter-mile times, we haven’t even talked about the fastest-accelerating electric car ever, the student-built AMZ Grimsel.
AMZ Grimsel – Thor’s Go-Kart
Formula Student is a student-run race series where people worldwide build electric time-attack cars. Each team builds one car, sticks a student driver in it, and then competes for the fastest time. Now, if driving an electric steroid-fueled go-kart at an autocross event sounds boring to you, you’re not alone. The Swiss team in 2016 decided that they didn’t just want to race their little AMZ car, they wanted to break world records.
Grimsel, the name of the Academic Motorsports Club Zurich division’s little car, is able to hit 60 miles per hour in 1.5 seconds. Count to three. That’s twice as long as it takes the little car to hit 100 kilometers per hour. If you want something to compare that speed to, we have to leave the atmosphere and look at the Saturn Five rocket that took man to the moon, which also had a 0-to-60 time of 1.5 seconds. Honestly, with the amount of aero on that little car, it looks like it could launch off the Earth too.
Okay, so you know what else is known for acceleration? Muscle cars. And if you think it’s blasphemy to put a huge electric motor into a 1960s Mustang, well, look away. That’s what’s happening next.
Zombie 222 – Sacrilege
The Zombie 222 is just out there to troll people and make haters mad. It’s a black and lime green 1968 Mustang, which is supposed to be one of the kings of the American V8. But this one has a 1,000-horsepower electric powerplant instead.
So, what does it mean to have a 1,000-horsepower electric Mustang? It means you can run the quarter-mile in 10.7 seconds, which is three entire seconds faster than what a new Mustang could do and one second faster than a modern Coyote Mustang.
And make no mistake, it’s about speed. While we can be poetic and talk about saving classic cars, the creator of the Zombie Mustang just wants to do one thing: prove that he can build a faster car than you can. And he’s planning a whole line of “electric muscle supercars,” or as he calls them, “lightning rods.” You know, like “lighting” plus “hot rod.”
Now, the Zombie 222 is great, but what if you want to build your own? It’s not exactly like you can afford an old Mustang to begin with. So, what about that new “Mustang” everyone is talking about.
RTR Mach-E 1400 – Four-Figure Stable
So, what happens when you give a bunch of guys known for building insane Mustangs and never driving them in a straight line a new electric car made by Ford? You get the Mach-E 1400. And, yes, I refuse to call it a Mustang. But it is a 1,400-horsepower drift machine that’s good enough to get Ken Block’s stamp of approval.
Now, the Mach-E 1400 is pretty far removed from a stock Mach-E. For one thing, it has seven motors, and half of it’s been replaced with carbon fiber. But it was built to prove that, in the right hands, the Mach-E could be tuned and customized. It also proves that the future of drift and Gymkhana videos being full of tire smoke and wild driving is safe. So, we’ve been drifting, accelerating like no one’s business, and looking hella good.
But I think there needs to be another 2,000-horsepower monster on our list. And this time, it’s from a company that you’ve actually heard of: the little British sports car manufacturer called Lotus.
Lotus Evija – Pure Lightning
I have a gross thought to put into your heads and it comes straight from motor journalist hero James May. “What happens when the sound of a V10 is the sound of a slow car?” And if that gets your blood boiling, wait until an electric car blows by you on the track because make no mistake, you will be staring at the taillights of the Lotus Evija.
Like the Owl, the Lotus makes 2,000 horsepower, and it also boasts a very impressive sub-2-second 0-60 time. But this is Lotus we’re talking about, the masters of lightweight, great handling cars. In fact, the Evija weighs 500 pounds less than the Owl and features the longest unbroken piece of carbon fiber fitted to a production vehicle, all to make sure that the Evija lives up to the Lotus name.
The Lotus differs from the Aspark Owl in another way, too, and it all has to do with how you drive the car. See, unlike gas cars that tend to get harder to drive when you make them crazy, electric cars can be limited and tuned with the push of a button, meaning that the Evija can simply drive like a Model 3 while you’re going around town. All you have to do is change the settings from “Crazy” to “Eco” and suddenly your 2,000-horsepower hypercar is nothing more than a mere 600-horsepower supercar.
Now, handling is pretty cool, and that 200-mile-per-hour top speed doesn’t leave anything on the table, that is until you need to recharge the battery. So don’t recharge them, just swap them out.
NIO EP9 – Hamster Approved
The NIO EP9 is fast, like “outdoes a Koenigsegg Agera R” fast. And It looks great too; I think it’s one of the better-looking electric supercars to come out. NIO, also known as “the Asian Tesla,” is pretty good at making electric cars, and their flagship supercar is no exception.
Now, the EP9 is pretty much a direct competitor to the Rimac One, an electric hypercar that’s famous for catching fire after being entrusted to British TV hosts. And, honestly, the Rimac absolutely deserves a mention because it’s another absolutely insane electric car.
But what really separates the EP9 from the pack is the fact that you don’t have to wait for the batteries to charge when you want to race again. See, NIO’s whole thing is that all their cars have swappable batteries, meaning you just pull in, let the techs pull out your dead battery and install a new one, then speed away. And their supercar is no different, making the EP9 a serious contender for endurance races like the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
But the EP9 is starting to lose its competitive edge because the speed at which these hypercars evolve is mind-boggling, which is honestly the only way to describe the speed of the next car on our list.
Rimac Nevera – Faster Than Plaid
We mentioned the Rimac One before and mentioned that it was insane. And it is, but it doesn’t deserve its own entry on this list. And that’s because it has a faster, better-looking, and way more insane replacement. Rimac, as it turns out, didn’t just stop innovating after the Concept_One. In fact, they are ready to release their next car, a street-legal, production hypercar called the Concept_Two, recently renamed the Nevera.
When the Nevera gets released it will be the fastest quarter-mile car ever produced. It might not beat some of the other cars on this list to 60 miles per hour, but it will beat all of them to the sand after leaving the tree with an absolutely jaw-dropping quarter-mile time of 8.7 seconds. To put that into perspective, it would easily beat every car at the Race Wars in The Fast and the Furious.
Oh, sorry, that’s not wild enough for you? How’s this? Right now, the car can hit 250 miles per hour. Those are Bugatti numbers, and Rimac isn’t satisfied yet. Rimac believes that they can get another 15% out of the car with some software and some tuning, and by the time it hits consumers later this year, they want it to be the fastest production car ever built.
Now, I know what you’re saying. You’re sick of all these hypercars built by no-name little boutique car makers. You want something with serious prestige. Well, here you go.
Lamborghini Terzo Millennio – Wave of the Future
This is the big wavemaker, the one car on this list that really drives home the idea that we are in the future. If any company was going to cling to gas power, it was going to be the makers of the original supercar, a company that is synonymous with insanity and is somehow equally popular with the Yakuza and wealthy rappers. But the crazy bastards at Lamborghini did it with the help of the geniuses at MIT. They made an electric car that lives up to the Lamborghini insanity.
Look at this thing. Just look at it. And the sci-fi stuff doesn’t’ stop at the design. The car can “self-heal” and direct torque to individual wheels using supercapacitors instead of batteries. The aerodynamics are constantly adjusting themselves, including the two wind tunnels that run the entire length of the car and can be directed to put downforce just over the wheels.
The whole car is alive. It’s constantly shifting and morphing itself to fit whatever task it needs to complete, whether that’s destroying the Nurburgring or just looking really damn good parked in front of the Ritz. Lamborghini even claims that they’re working on a new sound, something to do with the way the car moves through the air and how the motors are shaped, that will be “as defining as their signature V10.”
So, if you’re still sitting there thinking that electric cars are boring, just know that you’re disagreeing with Lamborghini.