The Torq GP, an Italian supercar prototype that develops 600 horsepower, could soon be racing on the circuits. Its particularities? It’s made of hemp and can even run on it.
Under the hood of the Torq is a two-stroke V6 engine capable of delivering nearly 600 horsepower at full throttle, and powered by alternative fuels: hemp distillate, hydrogen or E85, a blend of 85% ethanol and gasoline.
The car, whose first concept presented at the 2015 Geneva Motor Show, is 75% built with hemp fiber, which used for the bodywork and its components.
With the Torq, our project aims to exploit innovative technologies that can bring great excitement to today’s often boring racing world,explains Thomas Bleiner, former Formula 3 driver and head of innovation at Excellence Design, the Torq’s manufacturer.
The engines currently on the market designed and developed to contain combustion engine emissions,” he continues. We’re proposing an engine that designed for other types of fuel, a two-stroke that will pollute very little and has high potential. All of this respects the environment.
In detail, the technological innovation of the Torq engine contained in specific components.
The base is that of a two-stroke engine, but the head is made of ceramic and is completely oil-free, so it does not emit pollutants; special pistons and injectors specially designed to vary the type of fuel.
Hemp fiber is used in some parts of the bodywork to replace metal or carbon.
Hemp fiber works exactly like carbon fiber, obtaining a fabric that then solidifies with a specific resin. Thanks to technological innovation, this hemp fiber, much lighter than metal, weighs practically the same as carbon.
The car could compete in the championship as early as the 2022 season. In each race, the first fraction of 130 kilometers could run on hydrogen, in particular thanks to a system of hydrogen production on demand by electrolysis of water. The second part of the race will involve either E85 or hemp distillate.