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Team Geolandar to race in Pikes Peak Hill Climb with electric vehicle

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The Yokohama Rubber Co., Ltd., has announced that its off-road
racing team, Team Geolandar, will debut in the 2009 Pikes Peak
International Hill Climb - the best-known hill climb in the world -
using an electric vehicle (EV). The event will be staged on Sunday, July
19, in Colorado, U.S.A. The team refers to the race as the "Yokohama
Team Geolandar EV Off-Road Challenge."

The aim of the "Challenge" - part of Yokohama Rubber's efforts to meet
its environment responsibilities - is to promote diffusion of the
current state and possibility of electric vehicles as well as to develop
EV tires for use in severe off-road conditions. The EV racing buggy
created by its own efforts of the Team Geolandar will be driven by Mr.
Ikuo Hanawa, a strong performer in world-class off-road races, and will
be equipped with Geolandar H/T-S tires featuring improved durability and
enhancing fuel economy through reduced rolling resistance. Proven in
various off-road races including the Asia Cross Country Rally and the
Dakar Rally, Yokohama Rubber's "Geolandar" SUV tire brand has been
highly evaluated for its handling and maneuverability - allowing stable
driving on any kind of road
surface - and for its durability. With this race, the Team Geolandar
launches a new push into full-scale off-road racing.

Begun in 1916, the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb is a venerable
tradition that marks its 87th running this year. Racing to the
4,301-meter summit, participants cover a 20-kilometer course beginning
at the 2,862-meter level. The race is famous for the severity of its
conditions: rapidly changing temperatures and weather, a combination of
tarmac and gravel surfaces, and 156 curves. This year, in all classes,
more than 200 automobiles and motorcycles will compete.

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