A Nissan engine will power the DeltaWing car as it races for the first time at the Le Mans 24 Hours (16-17 June). While Nissan DeltaWing will not be classified in the 2012 Le Mans 24 Hours, the company is looking to showcase the technology that will show one potential direction for the future of motorsport and will feed into the research and development of future technologies, that filter down to Nissan’s road car product range.
A race-prepared 1.6-litre four-cylinder engine, featuring direct petrol injection and a turbocharger, will power Nissan DeltaWing, which is half the weight and has half the aerodynamic drag of a conventional racer.
The engine, badged DIG-T (Direct Injection Gasoline – Turbocharged), is expected to produce around 300hp, sufficient to give Nissan DeltaWing lap times between LMP1 and LMP2 machines at Le Mans, despite having only half the power of those conventional prototypes. It features the same technology found in Nissan road cars, such as the Nissan Juke DIG-T.
[ Also Read: Toyota Debuts Digital Campaign for New Prius c ]
“As motor racing rulebooks have become tighter over time, racing cars look more and more similar and the technology used has had less and less relevance to road car development. Nissan DeltaWing aims to change that and we were an obvious choice to become part of the project,” said Andy Palmer, executive VP, Nissan Motor Co., Ltd.
The first two Nissan DeltaWing drivers to be confirmed are British Sportscar racer Marino Franchitti and Nissan’s reigning FIA GT1 World Champion Michael Krumm. The car will make its first public demo laps at Sebring, Florida, at 12.30pm local time on Thursday, March 15.