Nissan’s Zero Emissions On Demand Race Car (ZEOD RC) will use a 1.5-liter three-cylinder gasoline engine capable of 400 hp.
It will be the first entry at Le Mans to lap of the Circuit de la Sarthe while running entirely on electric power when it does so in June. Nissan revealed its race car last year in October looking almost identical to the Delta Wing race car project the company was previously a part of.
This car is able to run exclusively on electric power, but also has an on-board gasoline engine that can be activated by the driver. Nissan hadn’t revealed details on the powerplant until today.
It revs to 7,500 rpm and makes just over 280 lb-ft of torque and Nissan promises that it will “revolutionize the standards of performance and efficiency.” The engine only weighs 88 lbs and it sends power to the wheels via a the same five-speed gearbox as the electric powertrain.
“Nissan will become the first major manufacturer to use a three-cylinder engine in major international motorsport. We’re aiming to maintain our position as industry leaders in focussing on downsizing,” said Nissan Motorsports boss Darren Cox. “Lessons learned from the development of the engine will be seen in Nissan road cars of the future.”
The company said it worked to greatly reduce internal friction. “Friction is the enemy of horsepower and tackling that has been one of the efficiency targets we have concentrated on heavily,” Cox said.
GALLERY: Nissan ZEOD RC Race Car