“Gearbox issue.” With that one statement, Nissan signaled the end of the revolutionary Nismo ZEOD RC’s adventure at LeMans 2014 – but, despite the fact that the car only raced for 24 minutes, don’t call the ZEOD RC experiment a failure.
Indeed, Nissan’s adventure with Deltawing designer Ben Bowlby started two years ago, when the Nissan-powered Deltwing contested the 2012 24 hour race. Since then, that old team has been sold to Don “Deep Pockets” Panoz, and Ben “Big Brains” Bowlby has gone on to bigger and better things at Nissan – which includes the road-going Nissan BladeGlider concept car, as well as the ultra-lightweight, super-advanced, tightly-packed Nismo ZEOD RC LeMans racer.
How much the ZEOD RC will influence the design of Nissan’s 2015 LeMans contender remains to be seen, of course, but there’s one thing about the ZEOD RC’s performance at LeMans 2014 that no one will be able to talk down: it was the first car to complete a full lap of the Circuit del la Sarthe on electric power, and the first battery powered car to hit 300 km/h on the Mulsanne Straight.
Good on Ben, then – and good on Nissan! I can’t wait to see what that dynamic duo has in store for us at next year’s LeMans!
Source | Images: Nismo, Motorsport.