This is to make the series more appealing to factory teams, again. McLaren already showing big interest
The prototype racing class decision makers are apparently rethinking their approach to the series, with the P1 class (LMP1, or Le Mans Prototype 1) likely to be restyled in the image of high performance road cars. The idea is a reaction to why manufacturers such as Audi and Porsche have left the sport recently.
A roundtable meeting between the FIA and the ACO (Automobile Club de l’Ouest, who is the organiser) recently is thinking of replacing the current regulations with a new one beginning the 2020/21 World Endurance Championship season.
According to a report by Autosport, the result could be top-tier endurance racers that look like the GTP prototypes on the late 1990s as seen below. (pic below is of a Porsche GT1. And further down the Mercedes CLK LM).
The LMP1 category has always been the realm of manufacturers due to the high costs. Even with other new regulations that is aimed to bring in privateers into the premier class – such as possible use of naturally-aspirated V10 engines other than turbo hybrids – the goal is to make P1 more appealing to the manufacturers. Currently, the only factory team left in LMP1 is Toyota.More car information please click here
Toyota Motorsport GmbH technical director Pascal Vasselon was quoted by the website that the new proposal was to “make sure the bodywork supports better (sic) the manufacturer’s products.”
“The idea could be to go towards bodywork that is clearly closer to real cars – it could interest manufacturers who at the moment are not interested in a generic LMP.”
What won’t happen, it is believed, are P1 race cars which are similar to hypercars such as the Aston Martin Valkyrie or LaFerrari. This is because racing homologated road cars does not enable the reduction in costs, which is an objective in the rulemaking process.
This new development has already gained strong interest from McLaren, with company boss Zak Brown quoted of saying, “We like lots of what they are saying: with the budgets and level of technology they are talking, it’s heading in a direction that means there is strong interest in our part.”
The initial discussions also involved racing teams such as from McLaren and, interestingly, Porsche.