Nissan will use its significant entry in this weekend’s Le Mans 24 Hour race (16-17 June) as a catalyst to support British armed forces charities. Nissan engines will power no fewer than 14 cars around the 8.469 mile Circuit de la Sarthe in the 80th running of the world’s most famous endurance race. For each mile completed by one of the Nissan-powered cars during the gruelling 24 hours, Nissan will donate £1 to be shared by three fantastic causes.
The Soldiers, Sailors, Airmen and Families Association (SSAFA) Forces Help, Afghanistan Trust and Mission Motorsport will all be beneficiaries of the speed and reliability of the Nissan engines that will power 13 of the 20 LMP2 class entries. The fourteenth car contributing to the forces charities is the pioneering, experimental Nissan DeltaWing racing car. On its mission to change the face of motorsport by proving the viability of new, efficiency-driven technologies, the unique DeltaWing is aiming to complete the race using approximately half of the fuel and tyres of the other entrants.
The SSAFA Forces Help logo will also grace the bodywork of a Greaves Motorsport Zytek Z11SN Nissan. With the car driven by former F1 driver and Le Mans winner Martin Brundle, in partnership with his son Alex and Nissan PlayStation® GT Academy winner Lucas Ordoñez, the large contingent of British fans among the 250,000-strong Le Mans crowd will be following its progress.
“Nissan is very excited about our Le Mans presence this year,” explained Nissan Motor (GB) Managing Director Jim Wright. “The entry list of 13 Nissan-powered LMP2 cars is testament to the speed and reliability of our engine, but the mind-blowing innovation of the Nissan DeltaWing project is something we’re proud of. To be able to combine the thrill of motor racing and the cachet of Le Mans with a programme to support these wonderful charities is very special indeed.
“We are obviously hoping that all of our cars make it to the chequered flag after 24 hours of racing, but this mission now takes on a new poignancy for all of us with the size of our donation linked to the miles completed by each of the Nissan-powered cars.”
In the 2011 Le Mans 24 Hours, the Nissan-powered Greaves Motorsport car completed 326 laps en-route to victory in the LMP2 class – a distance of 2,761 miles. The three charities will be hoping to see all 14 cars competing a similar distance in this year’s race!