Ford to shock competition with electric SuperVan 4 at Pikes Peak Hill Climb - Select Van Leasing
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Ford to shock competition with electric SuperVan 4 at Pikes Peak Hill Climb

Ford has been competing in the famous Pikes Peak International Hill Climb for 100 years and is continuing that tradition for the 101st running of the event with the all-electric SuperVan 4.

Named in honour of American explorer Zebulon Pike — although he never reached the top — Pikes Peak, just outside of Colorado Springs, has hosted the hill climb event since 1916. Ford entered the first event with a Model T, climbing to the 14,115ft peak in just over 28 minutes. The record now stands at 7 minutes 57 seconds, held by Volkswagen with the race-prepared ID R.

Ford has entered vehicles from across its range, from the Model T to last year’s Mustang Shelby GT500SE. Over the years, several iconic drivers have piloted Fords up the mountain, from record breakers Curtis Tanner and Parnelli Jones in the 1960s to the late Ken Block’s incredible Hoonicorn run up the mountain for Climbkhana.

For 2023, SuperVan 4 will be piloted by Pikes Peak record holder and three-time Le Mans winner Romain Dumas. With eight previous entries in the climb, Dumas will be well-versed in the demanding twists and turns of the challenge.

“The Pikes Peak International Hill Climb is the perfect next stop for Ford Performance and is the perfect place to take SuperVan 4, as both have long, storied histories that ignite the imagination of racing fans all over the world,” 

stated Mark Rushbrook, global director of Ford Performance Motorsports.

“Both have evolved over time, and it’s time to take our electric vehicle technology and put it to the test on the mountain against some of the most impressive performance vehicles in the world.”
“Ford’s latest generation of Electric vehicle technology is the perfect match for America’s Mountain,”

said Dumas.

“With high altitudes cutting power in traditional ICE-powered vehicles, the electric powertrain of SuperVan 4 has no loss at elevation and will be a healthy competitor in this year's race.”

Ford Performance SuperVan 4

The SuperVan 4 is, as the name suggests, the fourth in a line of spectacular vans developed by Ford. The original SuperVan arrived in 1971 and was little more than a Transit body placed over the chassis of a GT40 supercar and its 400hp, 5.0-litre V8 engine. SuperVan 2 followed in 1983, built around a Group C prototype racing chassis designed to tackle Le Mans and powered by a 3.9-litre V8 producing 590hp. SuperVan 3 contended with the same chassis but switched the power to a 650hp, 3.5-litre V8 engine from Ford’s Formula 1 programme. 

SuperVan 4, built as a joint effort between Ford Performance and STARD, is powered by a 50kWh battery pack providing energy to four electric motors — one for each wheel — that produce an astonishing 2,000hp.

“SuperVan 4 is equipped with one of the world´s most powerful electric powertrains ever developed,”

said STARD CEO Michael Sakowicz.

“It has gone up the hill at Goodwood, rallied over WRC tarmac stages and more. Now, to send it to one of the world´s most iconic and unique events is very exciting, and STARD is proud to be a part of it.”

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