F1 racer & Gumpert plan to enter hybrid electric version of its Apollo supercar ~ Auto Guru India - Junction of News, Auto Reviews, Advice

May 17, 2008

F1 racer & Gumpert plan to enter hybrid electric version of its Apollo supercar

PLYMOUTH MEETING, Pa. - Mr. Heinz-Harald Frentzen, ex-Formula One (F1) racer and champion, and Gumpert Sportwagenmanufaktur GmbH (Gumpert) have announced plans to enter a hybrid electric version of its Apollo supercar into this year's Nurburgring 24 hour race, at the end of May 2008, powered by a battery solution from Lithium Technology Corporation (LTC). The car will be piloted by Mr. Dirk Muller and Mr. Frentzen.

"We are pleased to co-sponsor the first hybrid electric version of the Apollo, produced by Gumpert in Germany, and lend our technology to a movement that increases public awareness of hybrid electric vehicle (HEV) performance and encourages advances in HEV technology," commented Dr. Klaus Brandt, chief executive officer of LTC. "LTC believes that Racing plays a significant role in pioneering the use of new technologies, such as lithium ion batteries, and offers the opportunity for us to demonstrate the performance of our batteries under extreme conditions while exhibiting the benefits and usability of our products to traditional car manufacturers."

The hybrid Apollo will use a 3.3 liter V8 bi-turbo petrol mill with a 100kW electric motor. The 9kWh GAIA(R) battery will be made of 90 high power 27Ah cells connected in series and will weigh about 190 kilograms. The battery will include an advanced battery management system (BMS) that will transmit battery performance data via satellite for monitoring and enhance performance control of the technical team. The battery will be charged prior to the race and recoup energy from braking during the race, in a mode that resembles a plug-in hybrid electric operation (PHEV). The electric range of the vehicle will be 50 kilometers, and plans are to double it in the near future.

"Motor sports cannot ignore the necessity to save energy. I see a chance that our sport will go back to the forefront of technical development, making cars outside of the racetrack much more energy efficient," commented Mr. Frentzen. "We are happy to work with the professional team at LTC, who provide us with the most advance and reliable battery solution that meet our stringent racing demands."

"With this car and this race, LTC has once again proven the superiority of its battery technology that is currently available to the selected customers," commented Brandt. "We are not only making a statement about our products, but put them to use in the most demanding applications in the transportation, defense and stationary markets to showcase our ability to answer the growing demand for safe and reliable lithium-ion batteries."

From racetracks to highways, to the depths of the ocean and up into space, LTC is powering the world in extraordinary ways. The Company manufactures a range of cells with two different types of chemistries, iron-phosphate and nickel-cobalt. Both chemistries coupled with the company's innovative end-to-end manufacturing processes and proprietary design and assembly techniques, allow LTC to provide large high performance cells and batteries unmatched by any other product.

Lithium Technology Corporation (LTC) is a global provider of large format rechargeable power solutions for diverse applications, and offers the largest lithium-ion cells with the highest power of any standard commercial lithium ion cell produced in the western hemisphere. With more than 20 years of experience, LTC leverages its extensive expertise in high power and large battery assemblies to commercialize advanced lithium batteries as a new power source in the military and national security systems, transportation and stationary power markets.

LTC manufactures the GAIA(R) product line of large, high power hermetically sealed rechargeable lithium-ion cells and batteries. The Company's product portfolio includes large cells and batteries from 10 times the capacity of a standard laptop computer battery to 100,000 times greater. LTC manufactures a variety of standard cells that are assembled into custom large batteries complete with electronics (battery management systems) and electronics to communicate with other components of the system for performance monitoring.

Heinz-Harald Frentzen is a German racing driver most famous for his career in Formula One. At various times driving for Williams, Jordan, Sauber, Prost, and Arrows, he achieved three race wins before his retirement from F1 in 2003.

Gumpert Sportwagenmanufaktur GmbH (Gumpert) is a German-based company building supercars. The first model produced is the Apollo. Founder and owner of Gumpert is Roland Gumpert, former head of Audi Sport. Audi scored 2 drivers and 2 constructors World Rally Championship titles during his time there.


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