Striking Nissan DeltaWing passes wet test
The Nissan DeltaWing - that's the bizarre racecar that will compete in the 24 Hours of Le Mans race this year - has passed the wet phase of its development testing.
The car was put through its paces at the renowned Snetterton circuit in Norfolk this week - the first phase of European-wide testing prior to its Le Mans debut.
Drivers Marino Franchitti and Michael Krumm (from Scotland and Germany respectively), used the UK's predictable dampness to check out how the unusual DeltaWing handles in the wet.
As it turns out it handles ok, with Nissan saying it passed its "first full wet challenge with flying colours." Presumably that means it's still in one piece.
The DeltaWing is so groundbreaking because of its shape and layout. It is half the weight of a regular Le Mans LMP car, which means it can have half the horsepower and be as quick.
Its shape means it suffers from very little drag, although with front tyres only four inches wide and all it's weight over the back axle, stability and handling are issues.
Nissan Europe general manager Darren Cox said: "The whole Nissan DeltaWing team is still on a massive learning curve. Testing in the States was a stable, predictable way of doing the initial groundwork but this exciting car is going to be racing in the French countryside."
Michelin is making the DeltaWing's tyres, and gathered the wet testing data to help formulate rubber for the car that ensures it's as stable as can be on the water.
Suspension, brake and gearbox adjustments were also made during the testing session.