Toyota Motorsport GmbH will return to this year's Pikes Peak hill climb with an updated version of its electric racing car, called the TMG EV P002. Last year, the car finished the 12.42-mile Pikes Peak race in 10:15.38 minutes, and Toyota hopes the tweaked version will be even quicker.
According to Toyota, information gleaned from last year's Pikes Peak race, as well as testing on the Nürburgring in Germany, has allowed the team to improve the power of the TMG EV P002's twin electric drive motors. It now produces a combined 536 hp and 885 lb-ft of torque, the motor top speed has been increased from 5000 rpm to 6000 rpm, and the carhas a claimed top speed of 143 mph. The car draws energy from a 42-kWh lithium-ceramic battery pack, and will be piloted by 61-year-old racer Rod Millen.
Because the hill climb takes place on a mountain, Toyota decided to bring its own dedicated recharging truck to juice-up the TMG EV P002 before races. The modified Hiace (a commercial van not sold in the U.S.) has an on-board 42-kWh lithium-ion battery that is charged ahead of time. The van can then be used as a mobile charging station to charge the race car ahead of its Pikes Peak run.
Last year, an earlier version of the TMG EV P002 (pictured below) set a new electric-car lap record at the Nürburgring, with a time of 7:22.329 minutes. The 2013 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb takes place Sunday, June 30.