Battery Box


Date Location Driver Driver Country Vehicle Power Speed over
1 Km
Speed over
1 Mile

August 23, 1974

Bonneville Salt Flats, USA

Roger Hedlund


Battery Box



175 mph


The Tuscaloosa News, August 21 1974
Hedlund breaks speed records
Wendover, Utah (AP)
- Roger Hedlund of Sunnyvale Calif., set four world and four national land speed records in an electric dragster on the Bonneville Salt Flats Wednesday.
Hedlund, piloting "Battery Box", set the world land speed record and the record for Class 2 electric cars, among others.
The biggest record Hedlund broke was the three-year-old world land speed record for the measured mile in an electric powered vehicle. He made the two-way run in an average time of 160.8 miles per hour.
Hedlund built the electric car in his garage to use as an exhibition dragster. It is powered by two forklift engines.
He said he doesn't know the potential of the vehicle.
Hedlund set one national and world record each for the elapsed time and speed for electric cars over-all for Class 2. The elapsed time of the two-way run was 22.4 seconds. The first run was at 167.3 miles an hour, the second 154.3.

The car's frame is a welded-steel tubing structure, called a "space frame." No suspension is used so the tubular front axle is attached rigidly to the frame. Stering is by rack and pinion. The rear axle is also rigidly mounted, but runs in ball bearing races (metal rings on which ball bearings rotate). Frame and axles are made of "chrome moly" steel tubing. A 25 hp General Electric motor, of the type used in forklifts, is located under the driver's semi-reclining seat. The car was designed to use 32 12-volt batteries, hooked up in series, but the record run was made with 28 batteries. This still resulted in 336 volts available to turn the motor, which was cooled by a fan from a car heater drawing fresh air through the motor housing.

The Battery Box currently sits in the National Automobile Museum in Reno