New Guinness record-holder just 45 cm tall
Guinness World Records has confirmed the record for lowest roadworthy car has been broken by the MIRAI, a battery-powered vehicle built by a group of Japanese high school students.
The MIRAI, built by automobile engineering students at Okayama Sanyo High School in 2010, measures 45.2 cm (17.79 inches) from the ground to its highest point (not including the driver).
Aside from the motor and batteries, every part of the MIRAI – the name means "future" – was built from scratch by the students.
"It can be frightening to drive MIRAI on a big street, especially when the speed goes over 40 km/h, because the road is very close to the driver's eye point," explains Harada Kazunari, principal at Okayama Sanyo.
"Also, you can feel afraid that you will be run over by other cars. So, we make it a rule, when we drive MIRAI on a busy street, to place a leading car to the front of MIRAI, and a guarding car in the rear."
The MIRAI beat out the old record-holder, the Flatmobile, by close to six centimetres, AutoBlog reports. The Flatmobile was a jet-powered Batmobile replica capable of 160 km/h, built by Perrywinkle Customs of the U.K.
(YouTube and Guinness World Records via AutoBlog)