After months of teasing, Nissan officially pulled the wraps of the ZEOD RC. The Zero Emissions On Demand Race Car will occupy Garage 56 at the 24 Hours of LeMans in June of next year. This weekend it is expected to hit the track at round 6 of the 2013 FIA World Endurance Championship, October 18-20 at Japan’s Fuji International Speedway.
Owing some obvious DNA to the breakthrough Deltawing; the advanced prototype will again take the Garage 56 slot, a category the Deltawing defined last year. 2012 LeMans effort veteran and recently crowned Director of Motorsport Innovation; Ben Bowlby; claims the ZEOD will be able to run an entire lap on pure electric power while maintaining 185 MPH. It will use energy recovery systems similar to the Leaf EV to recharge when it is being propelled by its gas engine.
Also like the Deltawing; the ZEOD RC will also have a 1.6 liter four that should put out 300 horses. The opening strategy will be running the car on one electric-only lap between stops and ideally extending the time the car is on the track and not in the pits.
Nissan Academy graduate Lucas Ordóñez has been named as one of the test drivers along with long-time Nissan pilot Michael Krumm.
In 2012, Nissan surprised a lot of naysayers despite the prototype’s tragic ending. Given the team and talent surrounding the ZEOD RC, it’s reasonable to expect another impressive effort. At a minimum, we can expect to hear the sound of change, like a distant rolling train.
But it won’t be distant long.