The NHRA’s U.S. Nationals in Indianapolis will be the first time the all-electric Mustang Cobra Jet 1400 will hit the drag strip in public. The NHRA made the announcement earlier this week, highlighting the one-off Cobra Jet’s impressive previous performance, at a private event, at which the car netted an 8.66-second elapsed time at 160 mph.
When constructing the strip-only electric racer as a testbed for future EV tech, Ford teamed up with Watson Engineering as well as MLe Racecars, the same shop that built the all-electric eCOPO Camaro for Chevrolet in 2018. Ford’s Mustang Cobra Jet 1400 gets its name from its 1400-hp output but Ford has reportedly dosed the car with even more power since its mid-eight-second performance.
We first heard about the car back in April, but nationwide racetrack closures and event cancellations left Ford unsure of when the car would be able to make its first pass at a national event. Now we know that the wait will be over when the NHRA U.S. Nationals kick off at Indy on September 3.
If you’re worried about electric cars taking over in motorsports, the NHRA’s David Kennedy assures you that’s not the case in drag racing: “Electric drag cars aren’t here to replace gasoline, alcohol, or nitromethane. Electric drag cars are here to add to our motorsport, and drag strips are here to do what they’ve always done for passenger car technologies—make them better.”
Drag racing is a challenging environment to test vehicles, and we’d love to see some competition in this space. Because it lacks the sound of an internal-combustion engine roaring down the track, fans may be slow to warm to all-electric drag racer. On the other hand, we bet there a quite a lot of crew chiefs out there that would appreciate a powertrain that doesn’t need a tune-up every time the barometer shifts.
Good luck to team Cobra Jet 1400!