At the 93rd running of the Broadmoor Pikes Peak International Hill Climb held last Sunday, no competitors were as quick up the 12.42-mile course as the Latvian entry from Drive eO or the Japanese-Croatian Tajima-Rimac effort. While a cursory glance at the specs of these two vehicles might suggest they are pretty similar – both are megawatt-plus, battery-powered, all-wheel-drive racers – each of their builders has taken a unique approach.

We had a chance to speak with Drive eO project director Kristaps Dambis at the (somewhat noisy) FanFest, a related event held in downtown Colorado Springs on the Friday before the race, which features the top qualifiers, chili cook-offs, and stunt-driving entertainment. His car, piloted by Rhys Millen and powered by six axial flux Yasa electric motors – two groups of three turning each axle – made it to the top in a record-setting (for electrics) 9:07.222.

The Drive eO team built this vehicle specifically for Pikes Peak. The 92-kg (202.8-pound) steel space frame walks a fine line between durability and lightness, while the wings, fore and aft, are meant to provide downforce to keep all four wheels glued to the roads through the 156 turns up the mountain. Watch the Short Cut above to hear more about the engineering of the car.

With helicopter hovering briefly overhead, we caught up with a very busy Mate Rimac on race day. He runs the eponymous electric supercar company, as well as the Greyp e-bike outfit. He teamed up with driver and businessman Nobuhiro "Monster" Tajima in January and had a mere four months to integrate a drivetrain into Tajima-san's existing aluminum and carbon fiber E-Runner. Scroll down to hear him give us a run down on this very special vehicle.

Mate Rimac Interview At Pikes Peak 2015 | Autoblog Short Cuts


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