Automotive racing is often the proving ground for new technologies, from safety belts to fuel injection to new tire compounds. These days, many motorsports are making substantial efforts to “go green”, going as far as to install solar panels, using sheep to cut grass, and calling for more alt-fuel racing competitors.
Nissan, an electric car pioneer, has announced its backing for the DeltaWing race car concept. This efficient race car will use half the fuel of current Le Mans competitors without sacrificing performance.
Using a turbocharged 1.6 liter direct-injection gasoline engine, Nissan expects to make 300 horsepower, about half what current Le Mans LMP1 and LMP2 cars make. However, the DeltaWing racer should match, if not beat, these same standard racers due to an aerodynamic design and light weight (thanks in part to carrying a lot less fuel.)
While the Nissan DeltaWing won’t be classified for this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans (meaning it can’t “win”), Nissan hopes that this will lead the way towards faster and more efficient race cars in the future. Much of the technology, including the engine, found in the DeltaWing is already found in Nissan’s cars.
I really dig the new look, but all that matters to me is performance…fewer pit stops and faster speed is what I want to see. And along the way, this technology will trickle down to more production cars, leading to even more advancements in fuel efficient cars.
Source: Green Car Congress