General Motors is set to become the latest automaker to race its new battery-electric vehicles – the automaker has announced that it will partner with Chip Ganassi’s team to field a modified version of the new GMC Hummer in the Extreme E series.
Extreme E is the latest effort from Formula E founder Alejandro Agag to demonstrate the capabilities of battery-electric vehicles. Scheduled to start in April, it will kick off with a five-race season in places like Saudi Arabia, Senegal and Greenland.
“I can’t think of a better fit than to showcase the look of the GMC Hummer EV in Extreme E with Chip Ganassi Racing,” said Jim Campbell, GM US vice president for performance and motorsports, in a statement. communicated. “The GMC Hummer EV and the Extreme E Series are both designed to be groundbreaking – to challenge perceptions of electric vehicles and to showcase their true capabilities. “
(GMC reveals more about production Hummer, including “Watts to Freedom” mode.)
GM doesn’t say much about the Hummer that it will be in the field with help from Chip Ganassi Racing, although a teaser image rendered by CGI shows the body will be heavily modified from the production version of the GMC pickup to ride in showrooms Later this year.
In fact, the truck will be based on the Odyssey 21 platform specially developed for the Extreme E program and shared by all of its competitors, with a steel tube body and an integrated roll bar. If the final version matches the render, the only thing the rally racer will have in common with the production pickup will be the Hummer light bar on its grille.
Power, meanwhile, will come from a standard-standard 550-horsepower electric motor, powered by a battery supplied by Williams Advanced Engineering. All in all, the system should deliver enough power to hit 60 mph in about 4.5 seconds.
In comparison, the production Hummer will use GM’s newly developed Ultium platform and batteries, and in the initial Edition One, three electric motors producing a combined power of 1,000 hp, with estimated launch times of just a little. more than 3 seconds 0 to 60.
But the organizers of the new Extreme E series are following the same strategy used for Formula E. Initially, its racing cars were completely identical except for their livery. Now, however, the formula is starting to loosen up, allowing teams to start introducing some of their own technology. This approach could find an echo in the years to come if Extreme E proves successful.
In fact, a number of conventional racing series also limit the technical flexibility of competing teams, with NASCAR being one of the best-known examples. Nevertheless, automakers still swear by the old mantra “Win Sunday, Sell Monday”. And that seems to be true with Extreme E.
“The new GMC Hummer EV is going to be a game-changer in how the world views the capabilities of electric off-road vehicles,” said Chip Ganassi, himself a longtime driver and a member of the Motorsports Hall of Fame.
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According to Agag, founder of the series, the goal of the Extreme E series is to demonstrate the capabilities of battery electric vehicles in some of the most difficult and exotic places in the world. The first year calendar will see five races:
- Desert X Prize: AlUla, Saudi Arabia: April 3-4, 2021
- Ocean X Prize: Lac Rose, Senegal: May 29-30, 2021
- Arctic X Prize: Kangerlussuaq, Greenland: August 28-29, 2021
- Amazon X Price: Para, Brazil: October 23-24, 2021
- Glacier X Prize: Patagonia, Argentina: December 11-12, 2021
The GMC Hummer is one of 30 all-electric models GM plans to release by 2025. It will debut later this year, featuring the new Chevrolet Bolt EUV and a refreshed version of Chevrolet’s current Bolt EV. The automaker plans to accelerate deployment in 2022 with models including the Cadillac Lyriq, the luxury brand’s first BEV.
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