FULLERTON, Calif. (June 16, 2010) — Yokohama Tire Corp.'s Advan ENV-R2 orange oil-infused race tires will be “racing to the clouds,” taking on the challenge of conquering Pikes Peak June 27 in the electric vehicle class.
The ENV-R2—the official spec tire in the IMSA PatrÃ³n GT3 Challenge by Yokohama and the new ALMS GT3 Challenge Class—will be running in the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb on a Sanyo battery-powered electric buggy with a new AC propulsion engine. It will be piloted by Japanese driver Ikuo Hanawa, who last year drove the Yokohama-sponsored EV buggy, sporting Yokohama's Geolandar off-road tires, to a second-in-its-class finish, missing the EV world record by 13 seconds.
The Fullerton-based tire maker cuts petroleum use in the manufacturing process by 20 percent, combining orange oil with natural rubber to form a new compound called “Super Nano-Power Rubber.”
While the ENV-R2 tires are campaigned on Porsche 911 GT3 cars in two sports cars series, including an endurance race, Mark Chung, Yokohama director of corporate strategy and planning, called the Pikes Peak race “a different beast, but we feel the ENV-R2 will handle the hill quite well.” He said the orange oil tires on an electric race vehicle “fits our longstanding commitment to innovation, technology and the environment.”
The proprietary technology, developed by its motorsports division, also is used in Yokohama's dB Super E-spec, a passenger tire that debuted in July 2009.