Australian solar car breaks Guinness World Record

The Sunswift IVy solar car runs on power generated by silicon solar cells, and produces around 1,200 watts – the same power as it takes to run a toaster. In 2009, the car hit a top speed of 103km/h during the 3,000 km Global Green Challenge race from Darwin to Adelaide in 2009, in which the team won their category.

"We broke the record at 10.32 this morning," said Sunswift project manager Daniel Friedman. "The Guinness World Book of Records adjudicators were on hand, so it’s all official. We’ve even been handed our certificate."

Friedman said the team was excited the car performed so well during the challenge, held at the HMAS Albatross navy base airstrip in Nowra. "We were expecting to get our peak sun at noon, so the fact we broke the record so early was a great result. We hope the news will spur a lot more interest in solar energy and the debate about renewable energy technology."

The carbon-fiber race car is said to be the same size as an average sedan, but half

the height and 1/10th of the weight of an average car. Powered completely by the

sun and creating no emissions during the operation cycle, it has a reported top speed of approximately 115 km/hr, and an estimated average speed of 85 km/hr.