Formula One led the advent of the “hybrid” race car with the introduction of the Kinetic Energy Recovery System (KERS) this season. Corsa Motorsports tested its Q10 Hybrid LMP1 race car yesterday at Silverstone in England.
Corsa Motorsports’ Q10 Hybrid does not run like hybrids seen on the streets everyday. The Q10 Hybrid uses a system almost identical to the KERS seen on some of the 2009 Formula One cars.
The system uses regenerative braking to capture energy normally lost to heat during breaking. The recaptured energy is stored in a lithium-ion battery and can be used to power an electric motor.
The Q10 Hybrid is powered by a 4.5-liter V-8 producing 625 hp and runs on ethanol. No specifications on the electric motor are given, but in Formula One, the electric motor used in the KERS device is worth an extra 80-hp when in use. All of the possible 705-hp is put to the ground using a Ricardo six-speed sequential gearbox using a “Q10 Hybrid electronic gear shift system.”
Corsa Motorsports also did not specify exactly how the system would be used in the car. It will likely be in a manner similar to Formula One where the driver pushes a button to call up the extra horsepower, although limited to six seconds per lap. Currently there are no regulations regarding the use of a KERS device in the American Le Mans Series
Look for the Corsa Motorsports Q10 Hybrid to make its racing debut at the Larry H. Miller Dealerships Utah Grand Prix from Miller Motorsports Park on May 17, 2009.