liter HDI Diesel V12
125.6 hp per liter
(from Peugeot Press
Release) An extremely positive debut for the Peugeot 908 HDi
FAP at Le Mans
Fourteen years after its
memorable one-two-three finish in the great French race in 1993,
Peugeots return to the Le Mans 24 Hours could hardly have got off
to a more successful start. The new Peugeot 908 HDi FAP shared by
Frenchmen Stphane Sarrazin, Sbastien Bourdais and their Portuguese
team-mate Pedro Lamy took the chequered flag at the end of the
24-hour race in 2nd place. In spite of the untimely retirement of
the N7 car of Nicolas Minassian, Marc Gene and Jacques Villeneuve
with just 100 minutes remaining after figuring in 2nd place at one
stage, the weekend proved particularly promising for Team Peugeot
Total whose objective in contesting the world famous
endurance classic was to gain valuable experience for its return in
Despite the changeable,
occasionally appalling weather, Team Peugeot Total had every reason
to be pleased with the way the 2007 Le Mans 24 Hours unfolded. It
was barely a year ago at a special press conference here at the
French circuit that it had unveiled a mock-up of the V12 diesel
engine it had earmarked for the forthcoming Peugeot 908 HDi FAP.
Twelve months later, the real thing powered the Le Mans prototype to
pole position for the celebrated race after previously posting the
time in the official pre-event practice day and also securing Le
Mans Series successes at Monza and Valence.
Prior to Le Mans, the
Peugeot 908 HDi FAP had covered no more than 3,500km in race
simulations, yet this weekend saw it go much, much farther. The N7
car had amply exceeded that threshold when it was sidelined with the
finish in sight and the N8 sister car ultimately took the flag in
2nd position, a dream result that has permitted Team Peugeot Total
to collect a great deal of valuable data and experience that will
obviously prove useful in its build-up to the 2008 race.
Sarrazin qualified the N8 Peugeot 908 HDi FAP on the coveted pole
position for Saturday afternoon's start in a thrilling showdown with
the team's rivals Audi during race-week's opening practice session,
while Nicolas Minassian put the N7 car third on the grid.
The two French cars
consequently powered away from the first two rows at the stroke of
3pm yesterday (Saturday) in front of more than 200,000 spectators.
Unfortunately, shortly after the race's five-hour mark, the N8
Peugeot 908 HDi FAP was forced to pit to have its rear
wheel-bearings replaced. The incident saw the car of Sarrazin/Lamy/Bourdais
drop back to 13th overall, but they battled unrelentingly throughout
the ensuing night to secure a footing on the provisional podium at
daybreak alongside their team-mates Minassian/Gene/Villeneuve
(Peugeot N7) who had inherited 2nd spot when the race leader
crashed out on Sunday morning.
exactly 100 minutes remaining, the oil pressure of the N7 cars
engine fell alarmingly, prompting the crew's instant retirement. The
powerplant of the other car also showed signs of weakness in the
dying laps but Sbastien Bourdais succeeded in holding on to cross
the finish line of the 2007 Le Mans 24 Hours in 2nd place!
(Executive Vice President, Automobiles Peugeot): "Todays result is
excellent and very promising for the future. All the resources we
have invested in this Endurance programme both financially and in
human terms are based on a long term presence."
Michel BARGE (Director,
Peugeot Sport): "I have to admit that the end was pretty
nerve-racking, especially when we lost a car with about an hour and
a half remaining. We saw some big falls in oil pressure and weve
now got to work on reliability to try and obtain the same degree of
performance during races that we have in testing. Our intention in
2007 has always been to bed ourselves in progressively to prepare
for next year. I would like to congratulate everyone in the team and
also all the
drivers who complemented each other so well and whose experience has
been so valuable for this project."
Stphane SARRAZIN (N8
Peugeot 908 HDi FAP, 2nd): "Its been simply extraordinary. The
mechanics did a fantastic job when we had to find a cure for our
mechanical problem early on. We didnt have sufficient experience to
challenge for victory but the weekends result is nonetheless very
Sbastien BOURDAIS (N8
Peugeot 908 HDi FAP, 2nd): "The greatest moment of the weekend? The
finish, naturally! It was an awesome way to end a crazy race. We had
a big engine problem and we just didnt know whether it would hold
for another lap. The team did a tremendous job to get us on the
podium of the worlds most challenging race, not even six months
after the cars track debut!"
Pedro LAMY (N8 Peugeot
908 HDi FAP, 2nd): "The Peugeot 908 HDi FAP programme started very
late. As recently as a year ago, there was nothing, so todays
result is that much more extraordinary. My team-mates all did a
fantastic job, too."