Nissan Debuts Racecar Version of Nissan LEAF
Nissan will unveil a racing version of its all-electric Nissan LEAF at the 2011 New York Auto Show on April 20.
In preliminary testing the LEAF NISMO RC produces 0 to 62 mph acceleration in 6.85 seconds and a top speed of 93 miles per hour. It is projected to have a running time of around 20 minutes under racing conditions.
Nissan is looking at the racing world as a way to draw attention to its electric vehicles.
“Combining the talents of NISMO, Nissan’s world renowned motorsports group, and engineers behind some of the company’s Super GT and FIA GT1 race teams, the Nissan LEAF NISMO RC will serve as a rolling laboratory for the accelerated development of EV and aerodynamic systems, as well as a platform for the development of new green motorsports series,” said Carlos Tavares, chairman, Nissan Americas, speaking at the New York International Auto Show.
Like the production Nissan LEAF, the NISMO RC is powered by a lithium-ion battery composed of 48 compact modules and a 80kW AC synchronous motor that generates 107 horsepower and 207 lb-ft of torque. It can be charged up to 80 percent of its full capacity in 30 minutes using the quick charging port located inside the rear cowl.
The Nissan LEAF NISMO RC is constructed with full carbon fiber monocoque bodywork. The three-piece bodywork includes removable front and rear sections, fixed windows, LED headlights and taillights and driver-adjustable rear wing.
The racer version of the LEAF has a 3.9-inch shorter wheelbase, is 0.8 inches longer and 6.7 inches wider. The most dramatic difference is height, with the NISMO RC sitting more than a foot lower than the production Nissan LEAF. Ground clearance is 2.4 inches, compared to 6.3 inches for the road going car. And, at 2,068 pounds, the racecar weighs in at about 40 percent less than the production vehicle.
The NISMO RC’s drivetrain powers its rear wheels versus the production Nissan LEAF’s front-wheel drive. The NISMO RC also utilizes a double-wishbone suspension design front and rear and driver-adjustable brake balance. It rides on 18-inch 6-spoke wheels and P225/40R18 Bridgestone racing tires.
The new electric race vehicle is scheduled to make a series of special demonstration appearances at various motorsports venues in 2011.
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