Hyundai renews partnership with Rhys Millen Racing for the 2013 Pikes Peak Hill Climb

Article by Christian Andrei, on January 22, 2013

A factory-supported, purpose-built unlimited class entry will be the vehicle driven by Rhys Millen, the defending champion of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb. Last year, Millen won the "race to the clouds" while driving a modified production 2012 Hyundai Genesis coupe. Hyundai unveiled the plan last Monday to support Millen's effort in a lightweight, 900-horsepower racing vehicle, which is fitted with a body that has a loose resemblance to the production Genesis coupe.

This vehicle will use powertrain components from Hyundai's Lambda engine lineup together with production components like block, cylinder heads and other parts. For this upcoming race, the modified production car that Millen drove in the Attack division last year will participate as part of a two-car team.

Last year, it set an event record of nine minutes, 46.16 seconds. Nissan declined to name who will drive this Attack entry. Steve Shannon, vice president of marketing for Hyundai Motor America, said that the all-time world record that Millen set last year in the production-based Genesis Coupe was a “defining milestone” in Hyundai's mission to make breathtaking and sturdy rear-drive performance vehicles that are as good on the road as on competitive motorsport.

The race last year was put off from its normal midsummer date to August due to wildfires in the Colorado Springs area as the race approached. The 90th edition of the historic race, which first took place in 1916, happened for the first time ever on a course that’s fully paved.

The race for this year is set for June 30 and covers 12.42 miles, with 156 turns and an elevation change of almost a mile (4,720 feet). Even if pavement now covers the dirt-gravel portion near the summit, it’s still dangerous. At the race last year, rookie Jeremy Foley had a startling tumble off a sharp turn and fell down a steep embankment by, flipping about a dozen or more times downhill at the point of the course referred to as Devil's Playground.

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