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Ford F-150 Lightning SuperTruck is #1 at Pikes Peak

F-150 Lightning SuperTruck EV. [Credit: Photo courtesy of Ford Performance]



The all-electric Ford Performance F-150 Lightning SuperTruck made the fastest pass of all 61 competitors at the 102nd running of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb on June 23, 2024. The winning time was 8 min. and 53 sec, despite a major glitch for SuperTruck during its run.

The demonstrator vehicle was designed by Ford Performance in conjunction with Ford Design and STARD Advanced Research and Development to excel in the extreme conditions of Pikes Peak, which is also called the Race to the Clouds. The truck showcases advanced aerodynamics, generating 6,000 lb of downforce at 150 mph, and features optimized electric motors for peak performance.

[Credit: Photo courtesy of Ford Performance]



Held in a Rocky Mountains area just 16 miles west of Colorado Springs, the race is a climb of 4,720 ft from the start at Mile 7 on Pikes Peak Highway to the finish at 14,110 ft on grades averaging 7.2%. It is 12.42 miles, 156 corners, and just one attempt.

For the 2024 running of the Pikes Peak International Hill climb, SuperTruck's powertrain consisted of three STARD UHP 6-Phase Motors and Ultra-High-Performance Li-Polymer NMC cells, generating an output of over 1,600 hp.

The F-150 Lightning EV demonstrator was designed with a triple-element front wing, headlight ducts, hood ducts and louvers, front dive-planes, side diffusers, rear diffuser, and multi-element rear wing to maximize aerodynamics. It also featured carbon ceramic brakes, Pirelli P-Zero tires on magnesium forged wheels, and a fully custom in-board suspension system.

Piloting the SuperTruck was Romain Dumas, a veteran of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb and current overall record holder, marking his ninth appearance at the hill climb and second with Ford Performance. Dumas' expertise and experience made him the ideal candidate to drive this special vehicle.

VIDEO: Romain Dumas discusses his (at-times-troublesome) winning run in the F-150 Lightning SuperTruck at the 102nd running of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb. [Credit: Video by Pikes Peak International Hill Climb]

Continuing the partnership started with Ford's SuperVan 4.0, STARD was integral in the development and construction of SuperTruck's powertrain design and controls.

"To make the best vehicles for our customers, our research takes us racing in the harshest and most challenging conditions -- the F-150 Lightning SuperTruck is the latest example of that," said Mark Rushbrook, global director of Ford Performance, before the winning run. "Our pursuit to the top of the mountain is charged by the commitment to make all our electric vehicles more capable, more advanced, and more exciting."

[Credit: Photo courtesy of Ford Performance]



[Credit: Photo courtesy of Ford Performance]



Since 1916, Ford vehicles have been conquering Pikes Peak, starting with a Model T that completed the climb to the 14,115-ft summit in 28 min. 3 sec. This year, Ford surpassed its own record set by its Ford SuperVan 4.2, which completed the run in 8 min 47 sec in 2023.

The SuperTruck best time of the day was hard-earned by driver Dumas after experiencing a technical issue and -- incredibly -- coming to a complete stop on course. The stop added a delay of around 26 sec over his initial qualifying time, but his quick thinking helped to minimize the issue. The Frenchman was able to complete a full reset of SuperTruck quickly to continue his climb, pushing more aggressively than ever to claim the top spot of all competitors.

Ford's all-electric SuperVan 4.2 came in second overall last year in the 2023 Pikes Peak event. [Credit: Photo courtesy of Ford Performance]



"Everything about this event is a challenge, because it is unlike any other form of racing -- you only have one shot. We faced a challenge early on, but that only gave me more determination to make up the lost time in the rest of the run," said Dumas.

Source: Ford Performance, Pikes Peak International Hill Climb

Published July 2024

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