Hyundai is partnering with the successful ‘Forze Hydrogen Racing’ student team from Delft University of Technology to help develop their latest Adess LMP3 chassised Forze racer, the Forze IX.
The Dutch team has been involved in developing hydrogen/ electric racers since 2007 starting with karts and, by 2012, full size racers. By 2019 their previous car, the somewhat obviously named Forze VIII finished second in class at the Gamma Racing Days at Assen.
The newer car though is set to make a big step forward and the technical assistance from Hyundai will provide a big step forward for the team, composed of around 60 students and their tutors as they continue their efforts to compete head-to-head with conventionally powered racers.
That assistance will come from the engineers of the Hyundai Motor Europe Technical Center (HMETC), located in Rüsselsheim, Germany.
The Forze IX has two fuel cell systems in the 1,500 kg four wheel drive car with a total combined power of 240 kW. The car has a top speed of 300 km/h and accelerates from 0-100 km/h in less than 3 seconds.
The development of the car then will now see the involvement and advice that comes from the Hyundai team that helped develop the roadgoing Hyundai NEXO, one of the best-selling fuel cell vehicles in the world.
“Forze is a fantastic team of bright students who see unprecedented opportunities in hydrogen racing,” said Tyrone Johnson, Head of Vehicle Development at Hyundai Motor Europe Technical Center. “Hyundai is pleased to enter into this partnership with Forze. By combining the knowledge and experience of Hyundai and Forze in the field of fuel cell technology, we can make even greater strides. ”
So then, is this an early indiction that Hyundai might be part of the drive for Hydrogen/ electric drive at Le Mans when the new regulations involving OEMS being able to utilise an ORECA/ RBAT spec chassis and a Green GT Powertrain alongside their own fuel cell stack? Time will tell!