Art and cars have a long and intertwined history. From Andy Warhol's BMW M1 to Keith Haring's Land Rover Defender, artists have used cars as canvases to express their creativity and vision. But what happens when an artist collaborates with a carmaker to design a hypercar that will race at Le Mans?
That's the question that Peugeot and J. Demsky tried to answer with the Peugeot 9X8, a radical new concept that will compete in the Le Mans Hypercar class of the FIA World Endurance Championship in 2022. The Peugeot 9X8 is not just a car, it's a work of art.
The Peugeot 9X8 is a technological marvel that defies the conventions of hypercar design. It has no rear wing, no side mirrors, no visible exhaust pipes, and no conventional headlights. Instead, it has a smooth, sculpted body that blends seamlessly with the cockpit and the wheels, creating a futuristic silhouette that resembles a fighter jet more than a car.
The Peugeot 9X8 is powered by a hybrid system that combines a 2.6-liter twin-turbo V-6 engine with an electric motor, producing a total output of 671 hp. The engine drives the rear wheels, while the electric motor drives the front wheels, providing all-wheel drive and torque vectoring capabilities. The battery pack is located behind the driver's seat, optimizing the weight distribution and lowering the center of gravity.
The Peugeot 9X8 also boasts an innovative aerodynamic package that compensates for the lack of a rear wing. The car uses active flaps on the front and rear diffusers, as well as on the roof-mounted air intake, to adjust the downforce and drag levels according to the driving conditions. The car also features a distinctive rear light signature that consists of 208 LED strips arranged in a claw-like pattern, echoing Peugeot's logo and heritage.
But what makes the Peugeot 9X8 truly unique is its graphic design, created in collaboration with J. Demsky, a Spanish graffiti artist who specializes in colorful geometric shapes. J. Demsky was not only concerned with vehicle design but also with conveying a message through his art.