Nissan Set To Electrify Clipsal 500 With Leaf Nismo RC

  • Repco Supercars Championship
  • |
  • 21/02/2014
  • By Nissan Motorsport

Nissan is set to electrify next week’s Clipsal 500 Adelaide with the on-track appearance of its spectacular all-electric racing car, the Nissan LEAF Nismo RC. 

Nissan LEAF Nismo RC is one of the world’s most innovative racing cars with its all electric powertrain, and will appear in Australia for the first time. 

Fans at the Clipsal 500 will see the Nissan LEAF Nismo RC on-track in the ‘Nissan Time Attack’ on both Saturday and Sunday at the Adelaide Parklands street circuit, with the all-electric racer on-track against a Nissan Altima V8 Supercar and a Nissan GT-R road car.

Fresh from his drive of the Nissan GT-R Nismo GT3 at the Bathurst 12 Hour two weeks ago, former V8 Supercars Champion Rick Kelly will drive the Nissan LEAF Nismo RC in the Nissan Time Attack, joining the likes of former Formula 1 driver Johnny Herbert and former FIA GT1 World Champion Michael Krumm as drivers given the privilege of piloting the technologically-advanced racer.

Former Nissan factory driver and television commentator Neil Crompton will share driving duties in the GT-R with young Adelaide racer, Samantha Zanotto (nee Reid).

“It’s going to be an honour to be the first person to drive the Nissan LEAF Nismo RC in Australia,” Kelly said.

“It’s a crazy time at the moment, having come from Bathurst in the GT-R, then testing our Altima V8 Supercar, and now I’m going to get the chance to drive one of Nissan’s ‘game changers’."
The zero-emission, purpose-built racing machine is powered by an electric motor with revolutionary lithium-ion batteries, meaning no fuel tank, no tail pipe and very little noise.

“The LEAF Nismo RC is a pure race car. It’s not going to sound like the racing cars we’ve all come to know, but the level of detail that Nismo has gone to in this car is amazing," Kelly said. 

“I’m also excited by what the future holds in the automotive industry and it’s great to be a part of a manufacturer that is a leader in automotive innovation, and in particular electric-powered vehicles, and the LEAF RC is a perfect example of that.

“I think the Adelaide fans will be blown away by its speed and I’m really excited to get behind the wheel of it at the Clipsal 500.”

Like the production-based Nissan LEAF on which it is based, the zero-emission LEAF Nismo RC is powered by electricity, stored in its revolutionary lithium-ion batteries. The long, up-sloping headlights are also pure LEAF, but that’s where the family resemblance ends.

Although fans will hardly hear this car glide by, the LEAF Nismo RC is a pure race car, with its three-piece body manufactured from carbon fibre. The shape and silhouette of the car is low and wide, and the adjustable rear wing is designed to create significant downforce, keeping the car stable and glued to the track.

The LEAF Nismo RC adds to Nissan’s catalogue of electric energy-powered race cars, which includes the recently launched Nissan ZEOD RC – the car that will break new ground at the 24 Hours of Le Mans this year. The ZEOD RC’s power plant will include the unique combination of a 1.5-litre internal combustion engine that boasts 400 horsepower, despite only weighing 40 kilograms, alongside its electric powerplant.

Nissan Motor Company Australia General Manager, Motorsport Jeff Fisher believes Nissan is globally pioneering the future of motorsport.

“Clearly, as the world becomes more conscious of resource management, alternative energies will play an increasingly larger part in racetrack technology," Fisher said. 

“The arrival of Energy Recovery Systems in F1 and the forthcoming Formula E electric race car championship are current examples of future technology in management of resources in the motorsport industry.

“The Nissan LEAF is changing the way we drive on the roads, with more than 100,000 zero-emission LEAF vehicles already sold worldwide. And the LEAF RC is Nismo’s translation of that innovation to the race track – demonstrating high levels of torque and grip – all without the direct use of fossil fuel energy.”

The Nissan Time Attack supports the opening event of the 2014 V8 Supercars Championship at the Adelaide Parklands circuit, where the Nissan Motorsport four car Altima team will do battle against its rivals in the manufacturer’s second season in V8 Supercars competition.

The Nissan Time Attack is just one of the great displays at this year's Clipsal 500. With a range of support categories and off-track action, the V8 Supercars event is one not to be missed. Tickets are available now. 


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