A new-look premiere class for endurance racing have been announced at the ACO’s annual press conference.
Launched for 2020-2024: sleeker prototypes with more marque cachet, but will retain the usage of a hybrid system while leaving free the choice of combustion engine at a predetermined and fixed cost. The name of the new class will be chosen by popular vote.
These new prototypes will feature a KERS system in front and 4WD to ensure energy efficiency. This technology will become more and more popular as the KERS system developed by some constructors will have to be used on production cars at a pre-defined price.
The new regulations are chasing a 3:20.00 per lap at Le Mans with limited fuel. The other priority is cost and vehicles will be competitive, innovative and affordable – requiring a quarter of current budgets. Costly developments will be kept in check by a new homologation procedure and technical rules that will naturally reduce budgets.
However, there will be no restrictions on engine design, with with either a turbocharged or naturally-aspirated design being allowed with any number of cylinders. Consumption rules will ensure fair competition between different systems. The new regulations will take effect for 2020-2024.
The cars will have an overall weight of 980 kg with a fixed weight distribution and maximum fuel flow.
An electric motor will be mounted on the front axle with a capped output of 200 kW and a total engine output of 520 kW.
“The new regulations for the FIA World Endurance Championship, which come into effect for the 2020/21 season, are the result of hard work between members of the FIA, ACO, manufacturers and teams”, said Jean Todt, FIA President.
“This will provide endurance racing with a long term, stable platform, while continuing to offer a cost-effective stage to showcase future technologies.”
Additionally, the ACO said it would be considering introducing a zero-emission hydrogen class for 2024.
An ACO/FIA working group has been assembled to research the topic with seven automotive manufacturers and parts makers developing hydrogen technology involved in discussions.
“Crafting these regulations was particularly satisfying as very quickly it sparked interest and gained the support of competitors or potential competitors”, added Pierre Fillon, President of the Automobile Club de l’Ouest.
“A new era will dawn in 2020 for endurance racing. On paper it has enormous potential. Le Mans 2018, 2019 and 2020 will each be outstanding editions, but now I can’t wait for the start at the 2021 24 Hours of Le Mans.”
300-101 400-101 300-320 300-070 300-206 200-310 300-135 300-208 810-403 400-050 640-916 642-997 300-209 400-201 200-355 352-001 642-999 350-080 MB2-712 400-051 C2150-606 1Z0-434 1Z0-146 C2090-919 C9560-655 642-64 100-101 CQE CSSLP 200-125 210-060 210-065 210-260 220-801 220-802 220-901 220-902 2V0-620 2V0-621 2V0-621D 300-075 300-115 AWS-SYSOPS 640-692 640-911 1Z0-144 1z0-434 1Z0-803 1Z0-804 000-089 000-105 70-246 70-270 70-346 70-347 70-410