Japanese tire company Yokohama is entering its HER-02 electric vehicle in the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb with the goal of once again setting an electric-vehicle record for the Colorado race.

Ikuo Hanawa will again be behind the wheel of the EV, which will be equipped with Yokohama's BluEarth-A tires and a Panasonic battery. Hanawa set Yokohama's first EV record in 2010 by beating the previous Pikes Peak EV record time by a minute and 15 seconds. Last year, he cut another 21 seconds off the record time.

The June 30 race involves more than a 4,700-foot climb over 12.4 miles of road and finishes at more than 14,000 feet above sea level. Along the way are a notable 156 turns. Check out Yokohama's press release here and its three-plus-minute video below.

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YOKOHAMA This Year to Again Run Its Original EV on Fuel-Efficient Tires in World's Toughest Hill Climb Race

Tokyo - The Yokohama Rubber Co., Ltd., announced today that its racing team will participate again with the company's original electric vehicle (EV) in the 2013 Pikes Peak International Hill Climb. The event - the world's toughest hill climb race - will take place on June 30 in the state of Colorado, U.S.A. The team refers to the race as the "Team Yokohama EV Challenge." As it was last year, the team's EV racing car will be equipped with "BluEarth-A" tires, which deliver superior driving performance, and enhance fuel efficiency.

The two-fold challenge with a zero-emission vehicle on fuel-efficient tires is to harmonize environmental responsibility with the joy of driving and to further research and development of even better EV tires. This will be the fifth year for YOKOHAMA to participate in the race. In both 2010 and 2011, the team accomplished outstanding feats, substantially besting the previous all-time records for an EV. In 2012, it beat its own record by more than 21 seconds, advancing its performance each year. This year, the team has improved the motor of last year's record-shattering EV car in an effort to beat the record yet again. It will once more be driven by Mr. Ikuo Hanawa, a highly skilled off-road racer.

Marking its 91st year, the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb - also known as the "Race to the Clouds" - is one of the most difficult motorsports challenges in the world. Racing to the 4,301-meter (about 14,110.8 feet) summit, participants cover a 20-kilometer (about 12.4 mile) course beginning at the 2,862-meter (about 9,389.7 feet) level. The course and conditions are daunting, with 156 turns and rapidly changing temperatures and weather.

During race week, events and progress will be posted on YOKOHAMA's motorsports site (http://advan.com/english/motor_sports/). Videos on YOKOHAMA's challenges of the Pikes Peak International Hill Climb since 2009 can be seen on the Yokohama Rubber Channel, on YouTube (http://www.youtube.com/user/TheYokohamaRubber/).

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