Infogrames has announced Le Mans 24 Hours for the Sony PlayStation 2. The game is an enhanced version of Test Drive Le Mans, which was originally released on the Sega Dreamcast. New features in the PlayStation 2 version include animated pit crews and drivers, a new track from the US Le Mans racing series, a comprehensive roster of racing teams from the 2000 Le Mans race, and 30 new car models including the Viper Team Oreca, Corvette Racing, and Team Cadillac racers.
"If you loved Melbourne House's Test Drive Le Mans for the Dreamcast, then Le Mans 24 Hours for the PlayStation 2 will blow you away," said Laddie Ervin, director of marketing for sports and racing at the Infogrames' San Jose Label. "As stellar as Test Drive Le Mans was, people told us what would make it absolutely perfect and we listened. Rearview mirrors, real-time headlights, animated drivers, and an animated pit crew are just a few of the new features that will accompany the awesome gameplay of Le Mans 24 Hours."
The game will have five modes of play, but as in the Dreamcast version, the meat of the gameplay is in the Le Mans mode. Here players can compete in time-compressed one-, six-, 10-, or 30-hour races or drive 24 hours in a real-time virtual simulation of the signature 24 Heures du Mans race. Up to 24 cars compete at once in a given race, and aspects such as tire traction and gas and oil levels are factors in the cars' overall performance. This makes it essential to pit, and in the pit players can refuel, change tires, and repair specific aspects of their vehicles.
Like Test Drive Le Mans, Le Mans 24 Hours is being developed by Infogrames' Melbourne House. The game will be released this summer for the PlayStation 2.