Nissan Zeod RC debuts in Japan
Dubai, October 21, 2013
Nissan has unveiled the Zeod RC electric race car at the headquarters of Nissan’s performance arm Nismo, in Yokohama, after eight months of development, design and construction.
The Zero Emissions on Demand racer has gone from zero to Zeod in 33 weeks after Nissan chairman and CEO Carlos Ghosn in February announced Nissan’s goal of returning to the Le Mans 24 Hours next year with electric power in the same venue.
The Zeod RC will race next year at Le Mans after being invited by the Automobile Club de l'Ouest to occupy the “Garage 56” entry for vehicles showcasing new and innovative technology.
Nissan is using the Zeod RC as a test bed to develop new electric vehicle technologies for its planned future LM P1 programme.
The initial prototype showcar of the electric racer was revealed at this year’s Le Mans 24 Hours, but the unveiling at the Nismo headquarters showcased the evolution of the design featuring revamped styling, new cooling inlets and aerodynamic updates.
“The Zeod RC utilises our technology gained through the development of the Nissan Leaf Nismo RC, the first EV racer based on the mass production zero emission vehicle,” said Shoichi Miyatani, Nismo president.
“The Leaf RC’s energy management and efficient energy recovery system that is suitable for racing are just examples. We believe these technologies serve as important steps for using EV for motor sports.”
The Nissan Zeod RC will become the first car to complete an entire race lap of the 8.5-mile Le Mans circuit on nothing but electric power. The car will reach speeds in excess of 300km/h (185mph) and lap the famous French circuit faster than an LM GTE car.
The driver will be able to switch between electric power and a small lightweight turbocharged internal combustion engine. The car – which shares the same battery technology as the Nissan Leaf – will recharge the battery via regenerative braking.
Fans will get the chance to take a close look at the Nissan Zeod RC in the Fuji paddock throughout the course of the FIA World Endurance Championship this weekend.
“To see the car go down the Mulsanne Straight at 300km/h in virtual silence will be very unique. Developing the battery technology to incorporate this into a Le Mans prototype is an enormous challenge, but the lessons learnt will not only be very beneficial for the future LM P1 programme, but also we can use this information to assist in the development of future versions of the Nissan LEAF and other electric vehicles for the road,” said Ben Bowlby, Nissan director of motorsport innovation.
Fans at Fuji Speedway this weekend will also see Nissan power in action in the LM P2 class of the FIA World Endurance Championship. - TradeArabia News Service
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