DeltaWing forced to retire at LeMans The Nissan DeltaWing may be listed on the results sheet as a retirement, but after being forced out of the 24 Hours of Le Mans, the revolutionary car has undoubtedly won the hearts and minds of fans throughout the world.
Six hours and 15 minutes into the race, the Nissan DeltaWing with Satoshi Motoyama behind the wheel was pushed off the road by the Toyota prototype of Kazuki Nakajima and suffered a hard impact into the wall on the exit of the Porsche Curves.
Motoyama worked for more than 90 minutes to try to repair the car to get it back to the pits but the damage to both the right rear and front of the car was too severe.
While the Nissan DeltaWing crew were able to offer advice, the driver is the only person permitted to work on the car while out on the course.
The retirement was a disappointing end for the unique car that was fighting its way back through the field after an early gearbox actuator issue.
Michael Krumm started the race aboard the machine that features half the weight, horsepower and aerodynamic drag of a typical Le Mans prototype.
The German spent nearly three and a half hours behind the wheel before handing over to Motoyama.
Sadly for the first man signed for the program and the driver tasked with developing the Nissan DeltaWing, Marino Franchitti, he did not get the chance to drive the car in the race.
Although the car had an early finish, it captivated the fan base here at Le Mans throughout the week and quickly became a crowd favorite.
Remarkably, the Nissan DeltaWing was completing 11 lap stints at LMP2 pace despite only having a 40 liter fuel tank and 300 horsepower.
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