Electric Engines Hold Their Own (02:25)
White Zombie, the "world's quickest accelerating street legal electric car," beats a conventional car in a Portland drag race. Engineer and crew leader John Wayland is proud of his project. (Credits)
Electric Advantages Beyond Cleaner Air (01:28)
Wayland converted his car to electric in the 1980s. Aside from changing the battery pack, it hasn't needed maintenance in 27 years—and he saves on gas money.
Electric Car: Sound of Silence (02:01)
Wayland shows us the simple engine layout of his converted vehicle. Without the internal combustion process, it is quiet and clean—he takes a spin around Portland.
Acceleration and Sex Appeal (00:55)
Wayland demonstrates the luxury features of his converted electric Datsun. It has won races against conventional cars such as Mustangs.
Electric Drag Racing Convention (03:20)
Enthusiasts show off their converted cars and motorcycles. Promoting the vehicles based on speed and power in addition to environmental benefits appeals to a broader audience.
Original "Siamese" Engine (01:36)
Wayland believes that once you go electric, you'll never go back—combustion engines are primitive in comparison. He shows off his custom motor running on hydroelectric power from the Columbia River.
Powerful Battery Technology (03:56)
Racing team member Michael Kadie shows us his converted Porsche Cobra running on lithium cells. He and Wayland use packs found in cordless power drills to run their electric cars; each one has the equivalent of 10 horsepower.
State of the Art Electric Vehicle Technology (01:47)
Kadie demonstrates his converted Porsche Cobra's electric motor engineered to compete in drag racing. Victor Tikhonov introduces his new engine manufactured by Siemens; it is made to travel at high speeds.
Self-Reliance and Ingenuity (02:24)
Operating outside the mainstream car industry, many electric vehicle enthusiasts engineer their own systems—and many go on to market their designs. Wayland demonstrates how to set the correct battery voltage.
Electric Vehicle Inspiration (03:26)
Wayland's love for technology and concern for the environment led him to engineer his own cars. He brings his design to a conventional garage, but the employees aren't convinced to give up their combustion engines.
Drag Racing Electric Against Conventional (04:58)
Wayland's team White Zombie charges their vehicle until the last minute for maximum power. They beat a Corvette by a few seconds, taking its driver by surprise.
Reducing Pollution by Trial and Error (01:43)
As a child, Wayland realized he wanted to make cars without exhaust. We visit an electric motorbike racing convention; an enthusiast experimented with several designs in search of the perfect engine.
Electric Vehicle Collectors and Everyday Users (02:35)
Miles Tweek shows off his original Milburn electric car from 1921; the model was produced before the combustion engine took over the industry. Another fan commutes in his converted Chevrolet Spirit—it needs recharging after 15 miles.
Electric Vehicle Advancements (01:07)
New lithium ion cells increase driving distances, lower charging time and lengthen battery life—making electric cars more appealing to the general public. Wayland believes once they become more affordable, they will be widely adopted.
Racing the Big Boys (01:49)
Wayland's electric car beats a powerful Mustang in a drag race. Team White Zombie is thrilled at their win.
Trying out Lithium Ion Power (06:56)
Kadie charges his converted electric Porsche Cobra for its first race. He is happy with the results—running at only 35% battery power.
Future of Battery Operated Cars (01:44)
Wayland believes electric cars will become mainstream. Another fan is inspired to convert his engine to electric rather than waiting for biodiesel technology to develop—clean energy is readily available now.
Credits: Running on Lithium: A New Way to Travel (02:03)
Credits: Running on Lithium: A New Way to Travel
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