The Formula Electric Racing NUST (FERN) program is run by NUST University and comprises young students who upgrade and make NUST’s racing electric vehicle, the world’s first. FERN has managed to bring the multi-billion dollar electric vehicle manufacturer, Tesla Inc., on board as a partner. Although FERN has secured many other international partners as well, this is the program’s biggest success.
Six years ago, NUST’s five-person team of undergrads built Pakistan’s first Formula Electric Car, making Pakistan one of six countries to participate in Formula SAE Lincoln 2016. Among 30 teams from six countries that qualified for the competition, FERN was the only one representing both Pakistan and Asia.
The partnership between Tesla and NUST can prove to be a game-changer for FERN since it can provide optimum guidance and financial support. The global pioneer in the EV arena has pledged to offer technical support, technology sharing, and essential components for FERN’s electric vehicle (EV) development.
This is the first time an institute has partnered with a multi-billion dollar car manufacturer. It was stated in an interview by a spokesperson for the FERN that;
“Words cannot express the sense of elation and gratitude that we have for scoring an affiliation with a name such as Tesla.”
Tesla and NUST’s partnership began when the FERN team approached Tesla Inc. about collaborating. Seeing the potential and sensing the bright future of the program, Tesla agreed to become a partner. FERN’s current project car has some of the best specs and numbers, including a 5 kWh battery that is good for a range of 22 km. The car can accelerate from a standstill to 100 kph in just 4.5 seconds, making it faster than most cars on Pakistani roads.
The team is currently developing several in-house components that will be integrated into the upcoming versions of the vehicle. For the nation, FERN’s hard work and dedication continue to be a source of pride.