I love the smell of nitro in the morning! However, I think this will go from idea to reality within the next 5 years. Imagine, 1/8th onroad performance without the mess and noise... The electric drivers will be able to step into a new and popular class with ease and reliability (and a zero learning curve)..
If you're a nitro manufacture and want to double your sells, just make a competive electric 1/8th with brushless and lipo.. Talk about the "Open Outlaw class" :-)
Think about quick pit stops, instead of fuel, just use a lipo pack like a rechargeable drill pack.. Quick release of the spent battery and reload with a fresh lipo pack good for another 10 to 20 minutes! :-)
The benefits of this could be amazing, for example brushless electric motors around $150us, that have mod power, and last??? No blown or worn out motors, and no need to learn how to tune a nitro motor (nitro motor manufactures eat your heart out).. No more buying gallons of "nitro", a few battery packs last all season, if we're lucky maybe two seasons?..
The technology is likely very close, I've seen brushless motors used in 1/4th scale planes along with lipos for electric planes and heli's... The next step into 1/8th on-road isn't likely to far away...
I do love the smell and noise of raw nitro horsepower, however, clean, quiet, and maintenance free has it's upside! Especially, when it comes to increasing a manufactures revenue... How many "good" electric drivers shy away from nitro based on learning curve around motors.. Talk about building a bridge.