PHOTO CAPTION: Deputy Secretary of Energy Daniel Poneman tries on GZ09-SH hybrid-electric racecar.

Corsa LeMans P1 Prototype Receives FIA Homologation

Utah-based hybrid-electric LeMans racecar exhibited in Washington, D.C.

Published: 17-Jul-2009

It was an electric day for the Corsa Motorsports team when it accepted an invitation from the U.S. Department of Energy to display the team’s No. 48 GZ09-SH electric/hybrid Le Mans P1 Prototype racecar on the L’Enfant Quad at the U.S. Department of Energy’s headquarters building in Washington DC.

The Corsa hybrid is the first such car to feature an advanced vehicle technology alternative-fueled hybrid propulsion system which received its final homologation from the FIA in Paris last week. The car has the ability to run on one of three propulsion systems – an alternative-fueled normally aspirated V8 engine, a 35kw electric motor powered by an advanced lithium-ion battery recharged using a kinetic energy recovery system or as an ultra-hybrid employing both systems in a parallel hybrid configuration. The Corsa exhibit featured a video presentation explaining the system technology and was particularly insightful for high school students who attended the exhibit from the Baltimore/DC area Engineering Academies of the National Academy Foundation. In addition to the students, management and staff from the Department of Energy as well as the EPA had the opportunity to closely inspect what is one of if not the most sophisticated cars on the planet.

The highlight of the exhibit was the attendance of Daniel Poneman, the U.S. Deputy Secretary of Energy who was able to get into the car’s cockpit and receive a complete debrief on the car’s systems and technology from the driver’s perspective. Said Secretary Poneman “I only wish my 15 year old son could have been here to see this”. Also in attendance were representatives from most of Utah’s congressional delegation including Sen. Orrin Hatch’s office who has been a strong proponent of advanced vehicle technologies.

“The opportunity to exhibit what we are doing at the very center of government policy and to provide awareness and education to the administration based on what we perceive as a part of the solution to domesticating the components and technology necessary to make these technologies not only sustainable but evoke a consumer response was exceptionally rewarding” said Corsa Team Principal Steve Pruitt. “I believe what we had a positive impact on the Department’s personnel and the role that we can play in helping the administration see the electrification of transportation through our vision.” Deputy.

With the car now homologated, it will have its inaugural competition with fully functional hybrid power this weekend at the fifth round of the American Le Mans Series at the Northeast Grand Prix at Lime Rock Park in Lakeville, Connecticut where Johnny Mowlem and Stefan Johansson will become the first drivers to pilot an LMP1 car with the revolutionary propulsion system.

About Corsa Motorsports: Corsa Motorsports is a Salt Lake City, Utah based race team that competes in the highest class of sports car racing series in the world’s premier racing series – the American Le Mans Series - with the world’s first alternative-fueled electric/hybrid/energy recovery propulsion system using advanced lithium-ion battery and power control systems.

For more information on Corsa, please visit or call Tere at 801.231-6976.

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Honda has not announced what the power plant would be in this concept car, which could be considered as a replacement for the aging S2000 Roadster.

Audi thinks hybrid systems are more sensible in smaller vehicles and because it wants to introduce the vehicle with lithium-ion batteries instead of nickel-metal hydride batteries.

Chrysler says the two-mode Hybrid delivers 40% better fuel economy in the city and a 25% overall improvement.


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