The new H24 hydrogen-electric prototype is targeting a race debut next year according to ACO President Pierre Fillon, who is expecting to have “at least” two manufacturers present in the hydrogen category’s debut in the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2024.
Unveiled last weekend at Le Mans, the second-generation prototype from H24Racing is 150 kg lighter than its predecessor, the LMPH2G, and features a new power unit, gearbox and battery, as well as a reduction from four to two electric motors while still maintaining the same power output.
The car, still based around an ADDESS LMP3 chassis, is targeted to fit within the current GT3 performance levels according to Fillon.
It is scheduled to begin on-track testing this week.
“The change in the bodywork is with new aero,” Fillon explained. “We changed the position of the radiator in the rear because we were not making enough downforce at the front of the car.
“We have also improved the refreshment of the fuel tank and have two electric motors now on the rear. This has saved 150 kg.”
After two years of private testing and public outings in Michelin Le Mans Cup events at Spa and Portimao in 2019, Fillon said the plan is for the new-gen car to have a race outing, likely in Le Mans Cup, in 2021.
“This is the plan,” he said. “We hope to maybe have this car in practice in Portimao for the Michelin Le Mans Cup, the last race of the season.
“We will see for next year.”
New partners in Richard Mille and Plastic Omnium, which will supply the hydrogen fuel cell, were also announced last weekend.
Fillon said the ACO is expecting “at least” two manufacturers for the hydrogen category’s debut at Le Mans in 2024.
“We would be very happy if we have between four to six cars,” he said.
BMW is known to be in working group meetings with the ACO on hydrogen technology, with Audi having been linked to a potential project as well, although neither manufacturer have formally acknowledged plans to produce a car.
Daniel Lloyd contributed to this report