Peugeot partners up with Total for 88th Le Mans
French automotive manufacturer Peugeot, along with brand partner Total, is kicking off its Le Mans Hypercar (LMH) project as the 88th edition of the 24 Hours of Le Mans begins. The two brands are collaborating once again to build an electric hybrid hypercar,
“Le Mans is the holy grail of the automobile world," says Jean Philippe Imparato, Peugeot brand CEO. "It is the race who determines its winner. For us, this represents 3 victories but also the endless sweat, tears and joy and an incredible team spirit with Total, with whom we celebrate this year, 25 years of collaboration."
"The choice of the LMH category was dictated by several criteria, one being that of a certain aerodynamic freedom. This makes it possible to incorporate, with the support of PEUGEOT Design, the aesthetic detail of the brand," Peugeot says in a press release.
Peugeot and Total has begun developing the electric hybrid hypercar, and basing it on the French carmaker's new “Neo Performance” design theme. At first glance, the hypercar looks menacingly out of this world, with its extreme flared fenders and ultra-low profile. Not only that, it has the crazy performance to match its insane looks. The car is said to have a power output of around 670hp powering a 4-wheel drive configuration.
Peugeot engineers launched multiple phases of studies in designing the hypercar: starting with the general structure, the aerodynamic concept and the choice of engine architecture of the vehicle. After the previous stages had been completed, the last thing to tackle was the electrical framework of the vehicle, followed by the conception of the hybrid traction chain.
Add to that, the company is taking strides towards reinforced energy, as the world is slowly but surely transitioning into using more renewable sources of energy. This is supported by the launch of Peugeot Sport's Engineered hybrid high-performance road line, led by the new Peugeot 508.
“This category unites our entire company and all of our entities, with features and technologies similar to those of our production cars. Through this commitment, Peugeot is opening a new register, that of neo performance," says Imparato. "We are coming back to endurance racing because we have the opportunity to work the sport in a different way, with the hybridization of gas and electricity."
“We mark 25 years of close collaboration between Peugeot and Total but also of strong involvement in motorsport," shares Philippe Montanteme, Total Strategy/Marketing & Research Director. "The “Le Mans Hypercar” project provides us today possibilities for joint development on the entire energy system of the car; on the efficiency of our fuels - for all the competitors, as the exclusive supplier- or for the lube, specifically designed for hybrid vehicles."
The new partnership will also allow Total to research new battery solutions alongside Peugeot and Saft, a company involved in the design, the development and the production of EV batteries.
“The new Le Mans Hypercar category offers an unprecedented and historical opportunity for sports and design teams to collaborate. The regulations answer fully to Peugeot's need and appetite to embody its vision for the future in its next competition car: that of electric neo-performance. The look of the vehicles will no longer only be the result of the wind tunnel sessions, we will have a dedicated space to create a unique, iconic product, combining performance and expressiveness," says Matthias Hossann, Peugeot Design Director.
"These sketches are the first design drafts intended to help us identify the important segments on which we should focus on. The three claw marks and the colors are symbols that we wish to produce on our hypercar. Our signature found in the light impressions are part of the strong identity emblems present on our production vehicles and that we wish to reproduce in the race."
Photo/s from Peugeot