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The Acura ZDX Is Pikes Peak’s First-Ever Electric Pace Car

Acura will also be entering two Integras to take on the 102nd running of the historic hill climb.
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When the pace car for this year’s 102nd Pikes Peak International Hill Climb breaks through the clouds to kick off the event, you’ll see it, but you won’t be able to hear it. That’s because Acura has called upon its new ZDX Type S for the role, the brand’s first all-electric car and the first electric pace car the hill climb’s ever had.

Acura is no stranger to Pikes Peak pace car duty, having supplied its vehicles for the job for the past 10 years. Last year, the TLX Type S pace car was driven by IndyCar driver David Malukas, and the NSX has done the deed more than once. This year, however, the ZDX Type S is being driven by BMX athlete and amateur drifter Coco Zuritas.

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The ZDX won’t be participating in the actual race, though. Instead, Acura has enlisted two purpose-built Integras for that purpose. An HRC-developed Acura Integra Type S will be driven by Katherine Legge in the Time Attack 1 division, while a team HART (Honda of America Racing Team) Integra A-Spec will be driven by Paul Hubers in the Pikes Peak Open division.

Built on GM’s Ultium platform as part of a deal between Honda and GM, the ZDX Type S has a 102-kWh battery pack and dual motors, combining for 499 horsepower and 544 lb-ft of torque, so it should get up the mountain quickly. Adjustable air suspension, adaptive dampers, and 15.6-inch front Brembo brakes with six-piston calipers should help it handle the 156 turns throughout the nearly 5,000-foot hill climb.

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While the ZDX is the first electric Pikes Peak pace car, many EVs have contested the hill climb over the years. In 2018, the electric Volkswagen ID.R even broke the overall Pikes Peak record, when Romain Dumas set a blistering time of 7:57.148. No electric SUV is approaching that kind of performance anytime soon (or probably ever), but the ZDX’s Pikes Peak duty speaks to the direction of the Acura brand as well as the future of the iconic event.

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