The Fastest Road Car Ever to Lap the Nrburgring is Currently the All-Electric NIO EP9

Matt Posky
by Matt Posky
the fastest road car ever to lap the nrburgring is currently the all electric nio ep9

Engineering a vehicle with the Nürburgring in mind doesn’t always produce the most enjoyable on-road driving experience, but it often results in one hell of a performance machine. The NIO EP9 electric supercar was already the fastest EV ever to grace the track, which is a feat in itself since the Tesla Model S proved itself incapable of maintaining full-trust for the duration of the 14-mile track. However, after taking another stab at it, the NIO is claiming the EP9 is now the fastest production vehicle ever to grace the track — gas or electric.

Under what NIO admitted to being perfect conditions, the EP9 completed the course in 6:45.90. That’s over 19 seconds quicker than its pervious lap time and 6 seconds quicker than the Lamborghini Huracan Performante’s. The EP9 also bested the Radical SR8LM, which is not globally street legal and only slightly more useful for daily-driving duties than the space shuttle.

Although, the EP9 isn’t exactly a Honda Accord. It may be road legal worldwide but it’s also a made to order 1.48 million dollar electric hypercar. NIO only built six in its last production run and it’s unknown how many will be assembled in the recently announced second round. But they’ve built enough to consider the ludicrous EV a road-worthy production car, and therefore valid to complete against other production vehicles’ times on Nordschleife — and track records seem to be something NIO is particularly interested in.

“In October 2016, we aimed to set a new lap record for an electric vehicle with our NIO EP9,” said Gerry Hughes, Head of NIO’s Performance Program and Formula-E Team Principal. “In the inclemental weather that the Nürburgring Nordschleife is known for, the EP9 completed two laps of the 20.8 km (12.9m) ‘Green Hell’, one of which was in 7m 05.12s, beating the previous EV lap record, making it the fastest electric car in the world. The EP9’s new lap record is 19.22 seconds faster than its previous lap time. This is a fabulous achievement for NIO and I am very proud of the team that has worked tirelessly to achieve this accolade.”

The EP9’s 1360 hp and 4671 lb-ft of torque have made it the fastest production car ever to lap the Circuit of the Americas earlier this year. It would appear that NIO’s publicity strategy for 2017 is to take the EP9 around to different tracks, allow it to smash the current lap record, and issue a press release every two months.

While many will claim this is death knell of internal combustion superiority, we should remember that Formula E is still very boring and most EVs still have trouble maintaining steam at the outer limits. The EP9 is a dark horse that may be able to lay down numbers only a few seconds behind cars competing in the World Endurance Championship, but its battery life would never permit it to stay out for more than a handful of laps. At least, not yet.

We’re also waiting on the official confirmation and documentation the EP9’s lap time in Nürburg, Germany. There’s little reason to doubt the validity of the claim — it is on Nurburgring Top 100 board, after all — but NIO hasn’t yet released the dash cam footage.

[Images: NIO]

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6 of 17 comments
  • Shaker Shaker on May 15, 2017

    There's no cure for cancer yet. (EV'S will never blah blah blah) Then we should just stop looking for one. "the NIO is claiming the EP9 is *not* the fastest production vehicle ever to grace the track — gas or electric." Anti-EV typo? :-)

    • See 2 previous
    • Lou_BC Lou_BC on May 15, 2017

      @shaker This car in many respects is a showcase, a rolling advertisement for advances in EV technology. On those counts it succeeds. If they can develop all wheel drive that works that well on a track car, the advantages of that technology aplied to street vehicles is mind boggling. Imagine how simpler drivelines and 4x4 systems would be if they built vehicles with this tech but ice powered like the Nissan e-Power? That would be incredible in something like the Ford Raptor, Ram Power Wagon or better yet, the diesel powered Colorado ZR2.

  • Ricky Spanish Ricky Spanish on May 15, 2017

    4671 lb-ft of torque 4671 lb-ft of torque 4671 lb-ft of torque wow.

    • True_Blue True_Blue on May 15, 2017

      Yeah. That was the "holy crap" moment in the article. Now I can see why it was so quick... four-and-a-half-THOUSAND pound-feet of torque.

  • Mike Beranek I don't care about the vehicles. But I'd be on board for inspecting the drivers.
  • Art Vandelay Coming to a rental lot near you. And when it does know there is a good chance EBFlex and Tassos have puffed each other's peters in it!
  • Art Vandelay I doubt there is even room for EBFlex and Tassos to puff each other's peters in that POS
  • Art Vandelay The lack of side windows is a boon for EBFlex and Tassos as nobody can see them puffing each other's peters back there!
  • Art Vandelay They all have sunroofs which is good for EBFlex and can stand and hang out the roof while the other puffs his peter