German Students Win Contest With 201 MPH Hyperloop Pod

The youth are the future—of underground transportation, that is.

A team of German students won the second annual hyperloop competition by creating and successfully testing a pod that topped 200 miles an hour in a nearly-mile long underground tunnel. That number is actually faster than any speed achieved by the Hyperloop pods so far.

The contest itself was sponsored by Elon Musk’s Space Exploration Technologies Corp. and saw the tech mogul and Tesla CEO attend the event in person. He witnessed the winning student team from the Technical University of Munich hit a top speed of 201 miles an hour.

“Two hundred miles per hour for a student-built pod is incredible,” Musk said after the contest finished.

Watch a video of the test run below.

Elon Musk took to Twitter after the competition to clarify a few things. The high acceleration is only because the test run is so short. For passenger transport, that acceleration can be spread over 20 or more miles. “No spilt drinks,” he added.

Up until now, the fastest a pod had gone is 192 miles an hour. Hyperloop One ran a test at that speed in July. That test had a much shorter tunnel and also used a larger commercial car.

The contest took place at the hyperloop test track in Hawthorne, California right outside SpaceX headquarters. Musk also has a company designed to build tunnels for hyperloop transportation called The Boring Co.

Hyperloop is a mode of transportation designed to bring passengers from one destination to another via an underground tunnel. The technology involves a capsule full of people floating on air and travelling through a low pressure underground tube. This allows the pods to travel at incredibly high speeds.

When Musk first announced his plans for a Hyperloop, he had lofty goals of speeds up to 700 miles an hour, and these rising test times only serve to show that hyperloop may soon become a new method of long distance travel.