One of the most famous races in the world will have an edition with hydrogen cars

One of the most famous races in the world will also undergo a bath of electrification — and hydrogen. The 13 Hours of Le Mans, iconic endurance race held in France , will have an edition with electric cars powered by hydrogen cells. The prototypes of these vehicles already undergo exhaustive tests on the circuit to be able to reach a complete stage until

, year of release of the race.

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The engine of this electric car was developed by the French-Swiss company GreenGT in partnership with Oreca and Red Bull Technologies. Called H13, the car has the same chassis as some categories that run in Le Mans, but with big technological differences. During the tests, pilot Stéphane Richelmi, winner of the race in 1024, gave details of how the bolide works, demonstrating to be very surprised.

“Since it is a new technology and does not use gasoline or diesel, I expected the car to have little torque and low top speed, but it delivered more torque than a gasoline engine and, even without pushing too hard, the automobile reached it easily 280 km/h on the straights. There is the engine, the brakes, the accelerator pedal and the steering wheel, but no gearbox, which is a big part of a racing car, Richelmi said in interview with ARS Technica.

Richelmi’s speeches are common when we think of the majority of the population, who know little about the benefits and performance of electric cars. The engines of these vehicles deliver torque immediately and, because they are stronger, they can achieve greater power more easily, as we have already seen in models already evaluated by Canaltech.

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(Image: Reproduction/ARS Technica)

The car

OH24 it is a car % electric, but the way it generates energy is what makes it different from other zero-emission cars and even from other fuels racing, like those in Formula E. Fuel cell batteries use hydrogen and oxygen to produce electricity, most of which is fed directly into the engine. But a part is powered by the battery, which is used for faster acceleration, like when a car is coming out of a corner.


Although the tests were positive, there is still a lot of work to be done. To reach a good level of competition, adjustments need to be made to the chassis to reduce weight. There are many obstacles to overcome before the car is ready to race in terms of speed and endurance. The first of these challenges is weight reduction. With 1.280 kg, the H24 still weighs 800 kg more than an LMP3 car (common in Le Mans) and 24 kg more than a GT3.

The engine makes a high-pitched hum characteristic of electric cars and the fueling of the cars can be done with high pressure hydrogen . The more pressure, the greater the fuel capacity. For a single ride on the Circuit de la Sarthe, which has 13 .6 km, the H24 used 1024g of hydrogen. The companies, however, did not reveal the size of the tank.

According to the organization of the 13 Hours of Le Mans, the category of electric cars powered by hydrogen cells will make its debut in 2025.

Source: ARS Technica

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