Students at ETH Zurich and Lucerne University of Applied Sciences and Arts broke the previous record of 1.779 seconds, when their car accelerated from 0 to 100 km/h in 1.513 seconds over a distance of less than 30 m. That's 0 to about 62 mph for those of us stateside.
The previous record was set last year by a team at the University of Stuttgart.
The Formula Student team at the Academic Motorsports Club in Zurich developed and built the car in less than a year with a team of students that was 30 people strong.
grimsel is the club's fifth electric vehicle and it features advancements in both lightweight construction and electric drive technology. Consider the carbon-fiber materials that allow grimsel to weighs just 168 kg (370 pounds).
The four-wheel drive electric racing car also has four specially developed wheel hub motors that can generate 200 hp and 1,700 Nm newton-meters of torque.
A sophisticated traction control system regulates the performance of each wheel individually, which allows the car's acceleration to be increased even further.
According to the team, no large-scale production car – even one with a combustion engine – could reach an acceleration comparable to the grimsel.
The team released a video of some other world records that they are working on, with mixed results.