The team will instead focus its efforts on the initial launch of the H2 car and, by not heading out to Saudi Arabia for the Dakar, will be able to concentrate on the start of what Lesonneur hopes will be an extensive testing and development regime throughout 2023.
“We want to show people that the car is ready, and it is driving, before the Dakar starts,” Lesonneur says. “And this will also have a positive impact on our planning, because when you go to Dakar, the time you take to send the car and receive it back, it’s like two months.
“And as our plan is to have the car racing in 2024 with Philippe Croizon, we have a huge amount of testing to complete before then, so this will help everybody to make sure that we will be ready for 2024.”
The H2 is a tightly packed piece of kit, with a 300kW (roughly equivalent to 400bhp) motor located at the rear, next to an integrated fuel cell and a 60kWh battery. Onboard is a hydrogen tank that stores up to 700lb (around 30kg), rounding total curb weight up to 5070lbs (2300kg).