Even at the age of 84, Roger Penske still has dreams. As a racing driver, he made two Formula 1 races. In 1966 he founded his own Penske racing team. The team has won a Grand Prix, the Indy 500 18 times and many championships around the world. Two years ago, Penske even bought the entire IndyCar series and the legendary Indianapolis racetrack. The American is only missing one victory at the 24 Hours of Le Mans.
That should change in 2023. Then Penske will look after the new LMDh prototypes from Porsche. The LMDh vehicles, together with the hypercars, should form the top class from 2023 in the WEC, the American IMSA championship and thus also in legendary races such as the Le Mans and Daytona 24h. Toyota, Glickenhaus, Peugeot, Acura, Audi and Porsche have already confirmed their participation. Further manufacturers are expected.
Porsche relies on an LMDh prototype. This is based on a chassis from the LMP2. It is still unclear which of the four manufacturers Porsche will work with. You can choose from Dallara, Ligier, Oreca and Riley.
Porsche cooperates with Audi
Porsche is free to choose the engine. A hybrid system is mandatory, but limited to 50 kW. The system output must not exceed 680 hp. It is also clear that Porsche and Audi will use synergies in developing the powertrain. What the architecture of the engine will look like is also not yet revealed.
In addition to the Porsche works cars used by Penske, customer teams can also purchase an LMDh. Dr. Michael Steiner, Board Member for Research and Development explains: “We will keep our fingers crossed not only for our four works cars, but also for our customer teams. The new LMDh vehicle will also be in customer service in both series from the 2023 season. We look after these partner teams intensively. We share the findings from the plant operations with you. ”
Porsche and Penske with a glorious past
Porsche and Penske have a glorious history: as far back as the 1970s, Penske used Porsche sports cars in the CanAm championship. From 2006 to 2008, Penske won the LMP2 class of the American sports car championship three times in a row with the Porsche RS Spyder (3.4 liter naturally aspirated V8, 480 hp) – including with the two German drivers Timo Bernhard and Lucas Luhr am Tax.
Roger Penske says: “We are all very proud of this day at Team Penske. For more than six decades we have represented the Porsche brand both on racetracks and in our other business areas. The common history and the great successes that we celebrated together are incomparable. I can’t wait to start building the global racing team that will race for wins and titles in the future. ”
An 84 year old man’s dream is alive …