Ford Performance announced Friday that it will campaign its outrageous electric Supervan 4 at this year's Pikes Peak International Hill Climb. Better still, it'll be driven by the course's overall record holder Romain Dumas, who'll put on a show that's not to be missed.
Revealed last summer, the Ford Supervan 4 (or Ford Pro Electric SuperVan) is the great-grandchild of the original GT40-based Supervan. It's a silhouette racer with a one-off steel spaceframe, double-wishbone suspension, a carbon body, and a relatively small 50-kilowatt-hour battery. Its power output on the other hand is anything but relatively small: 1,973 horsepower, laid down through a two-speed transmission that makes the Supervan 4 capable of zero to 60 mph in less than two seconds, and a top speed of 186 mph.
Its electric power also won't diminish with altitude, which is a major advantage at the cloud-piercing Pikes Peak race. With a start line above 9,000 feet and its finish at 14,115, Pikes Peak saps combustion engines of their power as they ascend. The Ford's driver Romain Dumas (also a three-time Le Mans winner) knows what that feels like, having raced Pikes Peak with both gas and electric power, and used the latter to set the overall course record in 2018 in the VW ID.R.
That car may have only been about a third as powerful as the Supervan 4, but it's unlikely the Ford will beat it. While not really a van, the Supervan still suffers from being van-shaped, whereas the purpose-built ID.R had no such handicap. The difference in their pace is best illustrated by their runs at Goodwood, where the VW (with Dumas at the wheel) again achieved a record of 39.9 seconds and where the van only notched a 46.6-second time according to Move Electric.
Still, while the Supervan won't come close to the VW's record time of less than eight minutes, under 10 is probably doable. We'll find out for sure when Dumas puts the Supervan to the ultimate test June 25.
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