Porsche has published photos of a sports prototype for the new Le Mans Daytona h (LMDh) class of the FIA WEC Championship. The super hybrid’s racing debut will take place in 2023. Porsche’s partners in this project are the Canadian company Multimatic (as the chassis supplier) and the American Penske team. With them, the brand actually returns to the top class of Le Mans, where it became the champion in the manufacturers’ standings three times – in 2015, 2016 and 2017.
LMDh sports prototypes will compete with Le Mans Hypercars (LMH) cars, although the regulations of the two top classes differ slightly (in LMH, manufacturers are given more freedom). The cars will be built on the chassis of one of four companies: Dallara, Ligier, Multimatic and Oreca. They should have the same aerodynamics, an Xtrac gearbox with integrated Bosch motor-generator set and a Williams Advance Engineering battery.
The power of the hybrid power plant is also strictly regulated. The combined output of the internal combustion engine and the electric motor cannot exceed 500 kilowatts (680 hp). And the weight of the car is 1030 kilograms. It is known that LMDh cars for the 2023 season are also built by Audi, Acura, Cadillac and Alpine. Well, the category itself is conceived as a replacement for the Daytona Prototype International class, so hypercars can participate in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar championship and in the FIA WEС.
In the top class of Le Mans, Porsche dominated for three years in a row: in 2015, 2016 and 2017. The sports prototype 919 Hybrid won the championships of those years, as well as the constructors’ cups and the WEC individual competition, and then the factory team left the races for endurance. After retirement, the hybrid set an absolute record for the Nurburgring and Spa Frankforsch, and its tires were released on vinyl records.