Last night Nissan gave its new LM P1 contender a very special launch at the famous Super Bowl.
On Thursday 5th February at 15h00, the Automobile Club de l’Ouest will announce the list of the 56 cars selected for the 2015 Le Mans 24 Hours on 13-14 June at a press conference that can be followed live on 24h-lemans.com.
If the Nissan GT-R LM NISMO is chosen by the Selection Committee, it will cause a sensation on the grid with its futuristic, aggressive look, the result of a very different technical approach to the ones chosen by the other entrants in the category. This car has front-wheel drive and a front mid-mounted engine, which explains the very different aerodynamics with wider tyres at the front than at the rear and a completely different weight distribution.
According to the manufacturer, this car could be the most powerful one on the grid. When the twin-turbo V-6 petrol engine and the hybrid system deliver their full power together they are said to push out some 1250 bhp (550 for the engine and 750 for the ERS system).
Nissan chose a very special way to unveil its new challenger: an advertisement during last night’s Super Bowl XLIX (see further on), the final match of the 2014 American Football Championship, which attracts some 110 million viewers every year. The time was 20h00 on the east coast of the United States when the Nissan GT-R LM NISMO appeared on the screens for the first time.
The Renault-Nissan alliance, the fourth-largest car manufacturer in the world, has arrived to swell the ranks of the blue riband category in the Le Mans 24 Hours in which it will take on the biggest names in the motor car industry, Audi, Toyota and Porsche, for victory in the overall classification.
What’s even more exciting is that the car’s design is radically different, and it again underlines the validity of the new LM P1 technical regulations as each of the manufacturers entered has chosen a different technological solution which, in the end, has resulted in similar performance levels guaranteeing extremely close top-class racing.
A few minutes after unveiling its car, Nissan announced its first driver, Marc Gené, winner of the 2009 Le Mans 24 Hours and second in 2014. In addition, the manufacturer released a longer video on line putting its new racer into orbit – literally!
Nissan made its debut in the Le Mans 24 Hours in 1986. The manufacturer’s prototypes took part in the race up till 1999 scoring its best result in 1998, third place by the no. 32 Nissan R391 driven by Hoshino, Suzuki and Kageyama.
Since 2011 the make has been a successful engine supplier in LM P2, and its V8 will again be used by several entries in this category in this year’s Le Mans 24 Hours.
A.S.O. - Automobile Club de l'Ouest