In pole position: Atlas Copco to power the world’s first national fully electric touring car championship

Experiencing the energy

26 October, 2023

Until now, touring car racing has taken place with petrol-engine cars. But in 2024, that’s about to change, as the Scandinavian Touring Car Championship (STCC) will become the first national racing series in the world to compete with electric touring cars. Key to enabling this transformation are Atlas Copco ZBC battery-based energy storage systems, which will be used to recharge the electric cars.

Scandinavia is well known for its efforts to combat climate change and countries in the region have set strict regulations to reduce emissions, particularly in city centres. STCC’s move to use fully electric cars will enable the racing to become more sustainable as well as allow the competition to take part in cities, which is an exciting prospect for the sport and its spectators.

Atlas Copco ZBC 250-575 energy storage systems powering electric racing cars

Atlas Copco ZBC 250-575 energy storage systems powering electric racing cars

There is a huge energy transition going on globally and a shift towards using electric power rather than fossil fuels, and the motorsport industry is no different. However, racing electric touring cars is very different to driving electric consumer cars. A major challenge we faced in electrifying STCC was that there was no concept. We needed new cars and new ways to power them, and to find trusted partners that could help us to achieve our dreams.

Micke Bern , CEO at STCC

Atlas Copco has a long history in efficient and reliable power supply and is renowned globally for its expertise in advanced energy solutions. STCC was aware of the company’s innovative energy storage systems and turned to Atlas Copco for support. The ambitious project consisted of developing mobile energy units to recharge the new racing cars, eliminating fuel consumption in the process and reducing the environmental impact.

Going electric

A vital part of racing electric cars is being able to supply them with energy and recharge the batteries quickly and efficiently while meeting emission regulations.


“We wanted the transition to be as sustainable as possible, and to use battery-based units rather than diesel generators,” explains Micke. “The chosen energy system needed to be able to manage energy coming from different sources, like renewables, and deliver it as required to ensure the touring cars had enough power for the races.”

STCC electric racing cars during the 2023 final event

STCC electric racing cars during the 2023 final event

“STCC reviewed various solutions, but Atlas Copco offered the right package for them, both in terms of capacity and mobility,” comments Torbjörn Håkansson, Owner and CEO of SMT Sweden, Atlas Copco’s distributor in the region.


Touring car racing uses a high level of energy, so the power banks needed to be able to handle a lot of energy coming into the system for storage as well as energy going out to the charger for the cars.


“Capacity was vital for us,” comments Micke. “The cars have 45 kWh and 800V batteries, and each session uses about 360 kWh. There are typically two sessions per day and four sessions in a regular race weekend. For city events, with head-to-head racing, the format is slightly different, and less energy is used. However, in metropolitan areas, it is particularly crucial to avoid greenhouse gas emissions during the events.”


The storage systems also needed to be able to be easily moved between each of the races and be ready to start on arrival.

Racing ahead with the solution

The ZBC energy storage systems deliver high performance for applications that require a significant flow of electrical energy. These units incorporate innovative high-density lithium-ion batteries. They can provide over 12 hours of power from a single charge and can be fully charged in just three hours, depending on the application. Additionally, the inclusion of advanced battery technology means they are more compact and lightweight compared with traditional alternatives, and are therefore highly mobile. They can be easily transported between races.


Furthermore, when working in island mode, these energy storage systems offer emission-free operations (critical for city centre applications), providing resilient and sustainable energy on demand and significant savings. 

We worked closely with STCC to fully understand their requirements, and recommended the ZBC 250-575 model, which has a rated power of 250kVA, storage capacity of 575kWh, and they are easy to use and install. We designed a mobile energy station, putting two units on a trailer and matching the specifics of the racing cars’ recharging process.

Fredrik Alund , Business Line Manager at Atlas Copco

Proving the technology

STCC electric car demonstration

STCC electric car demonstration

During 2023, there have been various demonstration shows where STCC has presented the new electric cars and proven the technology. Two mobile energy stations, with two ZBC 250-575 energy storage systems each, have been used to recharge the electric racing cars used in these demonstrations. The latest demonstration took place during STCC’s closing event this year in Mantorp, and showcased the new CUPRA Born and the Tesla Model 3 to over 11,000 attendees.


“We have been testing the system to its limits, and it works very well,” explains Torbjörn. “An added benefit is that STCC has also been able to use the ZBC systems to recharge the loaders that are used at race events.”

A thrilling future

The 2024 season will be more sustainable than previous years and is hotly tipped to be more exciting to watch. The powerful rear-wheel-drive cars have in excess of 500 horsepower, and have been designed with common parts, aerodynamics that promote close racing and a complete lack of driver aids, such as ABS or stability control —making the contest more about the skill of the driver.


“Without Atlas Copco’s expertise, we wouldn’t be able to move forward and make this history with electric touring car racing,” says Micke. “Its technology has made our new electric championship a reality and the future of electric touring car racing looks promising. We have also attracted a lot of international interest.”


“We have enjoyed working together with STCC on their pioneering journey and are pleased we have been able to help them reach their goals,” concludes Frederick. “We are looking forward to the first race in Gothenburg and will be excitedly following the 2024 season.”

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