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Le Mans/WEC 2020 Regulations (and beyond)


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#1 Ben1445

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Posted 09 October 2018 - 08:14

Seems apt to me to have a fresher thread for this - the one where a lot of this is contained seems to have a title no longer reflective of content*. 

 

The background, if you missed it, is to have more road car styled prototypes - the so called 'Hypercar' class. Basic idea is to be less complicated and less aerodynamically refined leading to lower budgets than current LMP1-H. More details are expected 'shortly' and Pierre Fillon is talking to 'five or six' manufacturers about these regulations. 

 

Visual-2.jpg

http://www.dailyspor...egulations.html

 

There's also the follow up direction the ACO are pursuing - Hydrogen - for 2024, the ground work of which may be laid into these 2020-2024 regulations in some form. So watch out for that maybe coming into play for even further future years. 

 

*Mods - by all means merge/retitle is appropriate if so judged 

 



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#2 king_crud

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Posted 10 October 2018 - 14:23

Hyrdogen? Don't we all remember what happened with the last hydrogen vehicles?

Hindenburg_disaster.jpg

#3 PiperPa42

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Posted 10 October 2018 - 14:35

Unless you suggest hydrogen powered cars will be 250 meters long  and store their fuel in bags I fail to see the connection.



#4 Henri Greuter

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Posted 10 October 2018 - 14:37

Hyrdogen? Don't we all remember what happened with the last hydrogen vehicles?

Hindenburg_disaster.jpg



Ah, the old Hindenburg pic to make an impact another time and pretend to have knowledge about the subject "Application of Hydrogen".

For the record:

Hydrogen technology in cars would be entirely different and something entirely different then the application that the Hindenburg used hydrogen for.
That used Hydrogen to become lighter than air to be afloat in the air. It didn't even use it as a fuel for any kind of propulsion.

Hydrogen for automotive use will be stored in an entirely different manner and nowhere near as potentially dangerous, let alone in amounts as were used with the blimps.
So: before posting a picture, I suggest you think first about what you post and in which context it its used. In the context here this picture is entirely out of place, just like the picture of the explosing Space Shuttle Challenger that, after one of the boosters blew up, also saw its hydrogen tank explode in the continuation of the disaster.

Edited by Henri Greuter, 10 October 2018 - 14:37.


#5 Burai

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Posted 10 October 2018 - 14:50

I quite liked the Autosport article suggesting we get rid of the LMP classes and make everything GTE-based. Not sure I agree with their assertion that it would prevent a spending war (it's Le Mans, someone always goes mad and makes everything unsustainable eventually), but I'm happier with the idea of genuine sports cars in the top class than prototypes masquerading as sports cars.



#6 Vielleicht

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Posted 10 October 2018 - 14:59

I'm slightly concerned at how quiet these 'Hypercar' regulations have been, I must say.



#7 PayasYouRace

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Posted 10 October 2018 - 19:01

Hyrdogen? Don't we all remember what happened with the last hydrogen vehicles?


If that’s a joke I think it’s gone down about as well as the zeppelin picutred.

#8 PayasYouRace

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Posted 10 October 2018 - 19:03

I quite liked the Autosport article suggesting we get rid of the LMP classes and make everything GTE-based. Not sure I agree with their assertion that it would prevent a spending war (it's Le Mans, someone always goes mad and makes everything unsustainable eventually), but I'm happier with the idea of genuine sports cars in the top class than prototypes masquerading as sports cars.


Yes I read that and thought there was some merit behind the idea. It certainly fits in with the idea of endurance racing being production based.

#9 Cornholio

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Posted 10 October 2018 - 19:39

I'm probably in the minority but I've always preferred prototypes to GTs, and not just due to performance (e.g. I preferred the look of the mid-90s WSC/LMP1s to the GT1s, even though the latter would often be quicker).

 

Maybe it's just due to the single seater world becoming ever more standardised though, with the exception of F1 (for now!). Prototypes (or more specifically, since 2017, LMP1) seem to the the one arena left for unique purpose-built cars to do battle in top line professional motorsport. Both production and purpose-built motorsport has its place, and maybe an improved single seater landscape might make me think "sod it let endurance racing purely be for production-based cars". Even then I'd still miss the prototypes though



#10 August

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Posted 10 October 2018 - 19:41

I'm slightly concerned at how quiet these 'Hypercar' regulations have been, I must say.

 

Manufacturers don't seem optimistic about reaching the goal of the new top class debuting in the 2020-21 WEC season.

 

So seems like until then we're stuck with Toyota as the only OEM in LMP1 (as long as Toyota wants to continue). At least I hope the ACO will find a good EoT to create some parity for these upcoming seasons.



#11 Henri Greuter

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Posted 11 October 2018 - 07:28

Hyrdogen? Don't we all remember what happened with the last hydrogen vehicles?

 
 

If that’s a joke I think it’s gone down about as well as the zeppelin picutred.


BTW, there have been more recent Hydrogen powered vehicles since the Hindenburg.

Within the world of space rackets there were a number of rockets using Hydrogen & Oxygen. The engines within the space shuttle used it, supplied from the auxillary tank under the belly. Before the Shuttle, the second and third stages of the mighty Saturn 5 Moon rocket also used hydrogen and oxygen. (First stage used kerosene & oxygen.
I don't know right now which current rockets still use hydrogen & oxigen.


Off topic but as for education if it comes to the subject of using a potential fuel for another reason than fuel: this is a little known fact that might raise a few eyes.
Hindenburg used hydrogen fuel to create lift and float through the air. The fuel capabilities of hydrogen were not used at all.
But there is another case of what is best known as an energy containing substance being used for something entirely different then unlocking its energy potential.

in 1960, when the Trieste bathyscaphe made its journey to 10.9 km below sea level, it used gasoline as `lighter than water` agent in order to prevent Trieste to sink down and never get back to the surface anymore. Trieste had a large `tank` filled with gasoline that was lighter than water and created the lift within water, despite its weight. It had also iron bullets on board that could be dropped to reduce weight and go upwards. But during the actual dive, the Trieste ran into water layers that were so dense that it didn't got through fast enough thus the crew dumped some of the gasoline to take in water, gain weight and continue the journey.
The potental to be used as power generating agent of the gasoline wasn't used at all during this journey of the Trieste.

Edited by Henri Greuter, 11 October 2018 - 08:48.


#12 thegforcemaybewithyou

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Posted 11 October 2018 - 08:00

Toyota doesn't seem to have any problems with placing a hydrogen tank directly under the rear seats.

 

Have a look here: https://en.wikipedia..._hydrogen_tanks



#13 king_crud

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Posted 11 October 2018 - 08:23

If that’s a joke I think it’s gone down about as well as the zeppelin picutred.


yeah I forgot motor racing is serious business only.

Onto the topic at hand, I'm happy with whatever they produce, as long as it is accessible for all entrants

#14 proviz

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Posted 11 October 2018 - 09:21

I quite liked the Autosport article suggesting we get rid of the LMP classes and make everything GTE-based. Not sure I agree with their assertion that it would prevent a spending war (it's Le Mans, someone always goes mad and makes everything unsustainable eventually), but I'm happier with the idea of genuine sports cars in the top class than prototypes masquerading as sports cars.

 

Very much agree with this. All current GTE needs is to be made the headline class in Le Mans. Then, later maybe some tightening of the regulations regarding car specifications, but that's not something to worry about for now.



#15 ANF

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Posted 11 October 2018 - 23:11

Hyrdogen? Don't we all remember what happened with the last hydrogen vehicles?

Hindenburg_disaster.jpg

"This is what our President should be flying in," Kanye West said in the Oval Office today. [video]

Edited by ANF, 11 October 2018 - 23:30.


#16 TF110

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Posted 12 October 2018 - 01:40

I hope this thread can stay on topic and not drift into political bs or talks about 100 year old blimps exploding. I am looking forward to the new rules. But I don't want upgraded GTE as a top class. They need to be like the Mercedes CLR or CLK GTR/ Porsche 911 GT1 '98 type of 'hypercar'.

#17 Henri Greuter

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Posted 13 October 2018 - 11:35

I hope this thread can stay on topic and not drift into political bs or talks about 100 year old blimps exploding. I am looking forward to the new rules. But I don't want upgraded GTE as a top class. They need to be like the Mercedes CLR or CLK GTR/ Porsche 911 GT1 '98 type of 'hypercar'.

 

 

Talking about those '98 area hypercars.....

 

A few weeks ago, at Laguna Seca I saw two of them, the '98 Le Mans winning Porsche and the street legal homologation example of the Nissan '98 longtail R390.

But according the fact sheet about the R390 I saw something that surprised me:  That car was rated at a modest 350 hp !

For good measure: the V8 Ferrari of that year, the 355 was rated at some 380 hp!

'98 Nissan R390: Hypercar?????

 

Nissan appearantly did what Porsche allegedly had in mind to do with the porduction version of the first version of the 911GT1, the '96 version. I remember that initially there was talk about building the homologation street versions fitted with `only` an atmo version of the Flat-Six with only some 300 or so hp instead of fitting them with teh 956 derived engines that the race cars got.

 

I wonder if the new rules for the future Le Mans cars also leave room for allowing such hideous differences in engine output of the homologation version vs the ones we eventually should see at Le Mans.



#18 FPV GTHO

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Posted 13 October 2018 - 11:44

I didnt think these new rules had anything about homologation

#19 king_crud

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Posted 13 October 2018 - 21:06

I loved those Nissans

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#20 Henri Greuter

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Posted 14 October 2018 - 08:25

I loved those Nissans

 

I had the fortune to see both the '97 street car (1997 Le Mans already) and this year the '98 `Blue Whale` and they are indeed both gorgeous.

In fact I also saw that '97 Mercedes CLK GTR that was sold at Monterey for 4.5 million and no doubt that that car was more practical that the Nissan. But the Nissan looked better to me

But like I said, I was shocked to see that the '98 was rated at `only` some 350 hp in this so called street version.  Now it was never sold, or even intended to be sold so they could put in pretty much whatever they wanted but still....



#21 F1matt

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Posted 14 October 2018 - 16:38

History has showed us that road car based rules will always be abused, a few are mentioned in the above posts, let’s just say we are talking about Bugatti Chiron, LaFerrari or Porsche 918 based cars, they are almost £2 million quid to purchase in road form so would be more expensive in race trim, the Ginetta LMP1 with an engine supply cost less than that and is exclusively for privateers. The privateer route is a must for long term survival, le mans will always get the attention around the world if Peugeot or Toyota are in or out, and the WEC has never attracted the casual fan only the diehards.

#22 Henri Greuter

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Posted 15 October 2018 - 06:58

History has showed us that road car based rules will always be abused, a few are mentioned in the above posts, let’s just say we are talking about Bugatti Chiron, LaFerrari or Porsche 918 based cars, they are almost £2 million quid to purchase in road form so would be more expensive in race trim, the Ginetta LMP1 with an engine supply cost less than that and is exclusively for privateers. The privateer route is a must for long term survival, le mans will always get the attention around the world if Peugeot or Toyota are in or out, and the WEC has never attracted the casual fan only the diehards.



Bugatti Chiron as a race car? In a formula that wants to keep cars at some 600 or so hp?

I had a laugh some 20 yers ago when it turned out that the street versions of the McLaren F1 GpC spin-off had more power than the cars eventually raced. To make a Chiron eligible to be raced anywhere that race version would put the cough cough `Standard street version`"(Swallow lump, sticking in my throat) to shame .....

Edited by Henri Greuter, 15 October 2018 - 11:36.


#23 Ben1445

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Posted 15 October 2018 - 08:30

History has showed us that road car based rules will always be abused, a few are mentioned in the above posts, let’s just say we are talking about Bugatti Chiron, LaFerrari or Porsche 918 based cars, they are almost £2 million quid to purchase in road form so would be more expensive in race trim, the Ginetta LMP1 with an engine supply cost less than that and is exclusively for privateers. The privateer route is a must for long term survival, le mans will always get the attention around the world if Peugeot or Toyota are in or out, and the WEC has never attracted the casual fan only the diehards.

Just place a condition of entry on manufacturers that they sell a ready to race car to privateers for, say,  £2 million capped price for a chassis and season long engine lease should they be approached by one. Then the manufacturers will have to keep the racing program profitable and design to those requirements, or maybe they'd just accept some of the losses for the sake of performance but at least there would be privateers with race winning kit. 



#24 Ben1445

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 07:49

Okay okay so, news: 

 

2020 'Hypercar' Regulations Step Up a Gear 

http://www.dailyspor...-up-a-gear.html

 

Have a proper read yourself, but... 

 

Quick points : 

- Bespoke racing cars, not racing version of road cars

- Road style design cues 

- Mild Hybrid system on the front axel only 

- Engine power restricted to 520kW (~700HP)

- Engine basis can be bespoke or road derived  

- Hybrid power restricted to 200kW (~270HP) 

- Open market for Hybrid systems cost capped at a maximum of €2m per season for 2 cars 

- Hybrid powertrain must be available to any privateer that wishes to use them 

 

- Target Manufacturer budget lowered to €20m per season (for two cars) 

- Privateers should be able to run a whole 2 car customer team operation for c. €16m per season (again for two cars) 

 

2020-technical-regulations-02-690x388.jp


Edited by Ben1445, 17 October 2018 - 07:51.


#25 ArrowsLivery

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 07:49

This is becoming worse and worse. Just disband the ACO already. 



#26 Ben1445

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 07:52

This is becoming worse and worse. Just disband the ACO already. 

:)  :)



#27 Vielleicht

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 07:59

Promising that they've been listening to budget concerns and plan on cost capped supply. The latter is proven to work in FE.

 

I think they have the right ideas, but at this stage it's still hard to say more than that.



#28 Ben1445

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 08:06

Also, from the Autosport article: "The €20m figure includes a proportion of the design and development cost of a hypercar concept prototype." 

 

Worth clarifying that one before people start assuming that it's €20m for two cars before development costs are considered, as has sometimes been the case. 


Edited by Ben1445, 17 October 2018 - 08:06.


#29 Kalmake

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 08:28

"No restriction on engine architecture" sounds like BoP.



#30 proviz

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 08:33

They're now planning to slow down LMP2 as the most advanced looking cars must not become the fastest! Just how confusing can they make it?



#31 Ben1445

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 08:50

"No restriction on engine architecture" sounds like BoP.



You’ve seen the whole ‘specified performance point’ concept, right? The one aimed at making the performance independent of investment?

Don’t need to read into one sentence like that, the information is all out there.

Edited by Ben1445, 17 October 2018 - 11:06.


#32 tkulla

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 10:28

Why not just go with DPi? Or Super GT? Oh yeah, they have to feel like they are "innovating" or something.



#33 CPR

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 10:35

Okay okay so, news: 
 
2020 'Hypercar' Regulations Step Up a Gear 
http://www.dailyspor...-up-a-gear.html
 
Have a proper read yourself, but... 
 
Quick points : 
- Bespoke racing cars, not racing version of road cars
- Road style design cues 
- Mild Hybrid system on the front axel only 
- Engine power restricted to 520kW (~700HP)
- Engine basis can be bespoke or road derived  
- Hybrid power restricted to 200kW (~270HP) 
- Open market for Hybrid systems cost capped at a maximum of €2m per season for 2 cars 
- Hybrid powertrain must be available to any privateer that wishes to use them 
 
- Target Manufacturer budget lowered to €20m per season (for two cars) 
- Privateers should be able to run a whole 2 car customer team operation for c. €16m per season (again for two cars) 
 
2020-technical-regulations-02-690x388.jp

 
One thing not mentioned in the above article but mentioned here:
https://www.autospor...-class-outlined
 

The new rules are based on the principle of setting performance targets for each area of the car that cannot be exceeded: there will, for example, be maximum downforce and minimum drag numbers prescribed in the rules.


This is something that I've suggested previously, for F1.



#34 TennisUK

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 10:58

 
One thing not mentioned in the above article but mentioned here:
https://www.autospor...-class-outlined
 

This is something that I've suggested previously, for F1.

I think that will be very problematic indeed - even more than the farcical BoP in DPI where the torquey GM engines cant eally be balanced against the others at all tracks as the characteristics are so different.



#35 Cornholio

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 11:08

Yeah that was my first concern at the engine regulations basically seeming to be "maximum BHP". Rather than encouraging different engine architectures, if anything won't it send everyone down the path of a big, torquey, driveable motor? I guess fuel efficiency will be a design factor too though, unless they decide to impose those farcical maximum stint lengths that ruined this year's GTE race at Le Mans.

 

I'm no aerodynamicist (well I'm not a powertrain engineer either of course), so not sure if there is any equivalent concerns regarding their blanket "max downforce/minimum drag" rules.

 

Although on the plus side it may lead to some ingenuity as the designers work around a set of rules (and potential loopholes) that they haven't worked with before. Well I kind of hope so to be honest, as if there's no differentiation of performance between the different cars, then what's the point?


Edited by Cornholio, 17 October 2018 - 11:09.


#36 Ben1445

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 11:10

If it’s specified aerodynamic performance points with just power limits on the ICE and Hybrid systems, surely that then means it’s up to the engine manufacturer to choose or engineer an appropriate engine for the job, rather than choosing one based on what they want to sell and then expecting it to be ‘balanced’ against the competition?

#37 Kalmake

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 11:12

You’ve seen the whole ‘specified design point’ concept, right? The one aimed at making the performance independent of investment?

Don’t need to read into one sentence like that, the information is all out there.

 

 

It depends on how big this window is.

 

 

The performance window applied in the regulations has been designed to ensure that any escalation of development is contained, a team could spend on development but will not be permitted to perform outside the performance ‘window’.

 

Having a budget cap seems odd if there is little to no performance difference allowed. Especially since...

 

 

There would be no restriction on any team decision to spend more, but it was made very clear that this would not be permitted to result in any performance advantage.

 

My comment was on engines. I guess they will have some kind of chart to BoP different technologies.



#38 Ben1445

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 11:16

Well I kind of hope so to be honest, as if there's no differentiation of performance between the different cars, then what's the point?


I mean there’s two main schools of thought, isn’t there? Either open competition with risks of one team dominating and spiralling costs or highly controlled spec racing which is close and pure buy with no technical differentiation.

Or the halfway house of BoP. Which apparently no one seems to actively desire.

#39 TennisUK

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 13:00

If it’s specified aerodynamic performance points with just power limits on the ICE and Hybrid systems

The problem is the notion of aerodynamic performance points is meaningless. Compare Spa or Le Mans to Sebring or Intergalos. All four of those tracks have totally different requirements - what might be beneficial on one may hinder on another - it will be impossible to balance.



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#40 tkulla

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 13:51

Has a series ever tried complete transparency? What I mean is that there is room left for innovation, but teams must publish the plans and designs for every part they use on their car that isn't spec. This would allow a short term benefit but prevent long term domination. Designing the reporting and policing mechanism would be difficult but not impossible.



#41 Kalmake

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 16:06

Has a series ever tried complete transparency? What I mean is that there is room left for innovation, but teams must publish the plans and designs for every part they use on their car that isn't spec. This would allow a short term benefit but prevent long term domination. Designing the reporting and policing mechanism would be difficult but not impossible.

No hope of companies agreeing to donate their intellectual property like that.



#42 RacingGreen

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 16:18

No hope of companies agreeing to donate their intellectual property like that.

 

Quote

The new rules are based on the principle of setting performance targets for each area of the car that cannot be exceeded: there will, for example, be maximum downforce and minimum drag numbers prescribed in the rules.

 

Well they will have to give all computer designs to someone because you can't scrutineer downforce and drag calculations on a physical car on Friday afternoon before a race.



#43 Joseki

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 16:43

In the latest Marshall Pruett podcast Graham Goodwin says that 7 manufactures will show a presentation about to the 2020 rules to their board of shareholders. 3 already did it (presumably Toyota, McLaren and Aston Martin), 4 about to do so.

#44 Kalmake

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 17:23

Well they will have to give all computer designs to someone because you can't scrutineer downforce and drag calculations on a physical car on Friday afternoon before a race.

 

And it's illegal for that someone to leak let alone publish their IP.



#45 tkulla

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 18:46

And it's illegal for that someone to leak let alone publish their IP.

 

I'd be quite surprised if anyone considered the modification of a brake duct or rear wing to be "intellectual property" in the patent sense. 



#46 Ali_G

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 19:30

Honestly, the ACO has to do something.

A lot of Sportscar racing’s appeal is the cars. In general, years with good looking cars are generally remembered fondly. I’m thinking the Group C era and late 90s/early 2000’s.

This move to hypercars is a stab at getting back to these days. Anything would look better than the current cars anyways.

#47 Kalmake

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 19:57

I'd be quite surprised if anyone considered the modification of a brake duct or rear wing to be "intellectual property" in the patent sense. 

That's right and a car maker might not design the aero themselves anyway. But you were talking about the whole car. There is going to be a lot that isn't spec, for example the power unit.



#48 TF110

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Posted 17 October 2018 - 23:03

Why not just go with DPi? Or Super GT? Oh yeah, they have to feel like they are "innovating" or something.


DPi is lmp2 man. Some people just don't get that. Not only is it makeup and plastic surgery on a p2 car but the manufacturers DON'T want them. If they did you would see that on the table. Only the cheap guys in IMSA want it. Super GT is a good thing but they are not lmp type cars. They're on a spec tub that manufacturers also do not want.

#49 ArrowsLivery

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Posted 18 October 2018 - 07:28

DPi is lmp2 man. Some people just don't get that. Not only is it makeup and plastic surgery on a p2 car but the manufacturers DON'T want them. If they did you would see that on the table. Only the cheap guys in IMSA want it. Super GT is a good thing but they are not lmp type cars. They're on a spec tub that manufacturers also do not want.


Which manufacturers want the current or “hypercar” regulations? Nobody.

#50 Ben1445

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Posted 18 October 2018 - 08:15

Which manufacturers want the current or “hypercar” regulations? Nobody.


Ooh, I didn’t know you were party to board level discussions of all the worlds car manufacturers. Do spill the gossip!