For the first time in the endurance event’s history, the 62 cars competing in the 90th 24 Hours of Le Mans were powered with Excellium Racing 100, a 100% renewable fuel developed and produced by TotalEnergies.

This zero-oil fuel delivered a reduction in carbon dioxide emissions of at least 65% over its life cycle, according to the French supermajor.

Excellium Racing 100 is a major milestone in the partnership between TotalEnergies and Automobile Club de l’Ouest (ACO), which is pursuing an energy transition and environmental strategy aligned with the operator’s ambition to get to net zero by 2050.

More than 18 months of research and development were needed to develop this renewable fuel made from wine residues — grape marcs and lees.

As the hydrogen partner to ACO and the “H24 Racing” team, TotalEnergies this year also deployed a mobile hydrogen filling station at Le Mans to supply the H24 hydrogen prototype that took part in the Road to Le Mans support races.

The project H24 Racing, developed jointly by ACO and electric-hydrogen specialist Green GT, aims to present an electric-hydrogen race car at the 24 Hours of Le Mans in 2025.

"Biofuels have an important role to play in moving the transportation industry forward by immediately reducing its CO2 emissions. More than ever, this most demanding of endurance races is a testbed for TotalEnergies and a showcase for motorsports as a whole,” TotalEnergies chief executive Patrick Pouyanne said.

“It’s a privilege for me to officially start the race!”