Porsche announced that it would return to the upper echelon of endurance racing last year, picking up Team Penske as its exclusive partner for a multi-year program that will compete not only at Le Mans but in America’s IMSA as well. Porsche has said its hypercar will debut in 2023 and planned to begin tests this month. On January 14th, Porsche tweeted a video as the hypercar headed out on track at Porsche’s Weissach proving grounds, the first time time a hypercar has been seen on track.
The LMDh factory program was created to increase competition by limiting costs to run in the series. Brands including Acura, Alpine, BMW, and Cadillac have already committed to the hypercar program. Alongside will be Porsche’s Volkswagen Group partners Audi and Lamborghini, which will provide “synergies” between the brands. Indeed, each hypercar will share parts with all its competition in a partially-spec series, again in an effort to increase competition. The chassis will only be available from approved suppliers with a shared hybrid system, making the engine the only truly unique part.
Porsche will be back to competing for overall endurance wins after an absence of five years at that point since it left the LMP1 class back in 2017. It will be first time in almost a further three decades that the same car will be competing for the win at Daytona and Sebring. Dane Cameron and Filipe Nasr are the only full-time drivers announced so far, although Porsche works driver Fred Makowiecki tested the car.
Makowiecki called it “a very impressive rollout” and said the car was “working as expected.” Alongside the car, an entire crew was present, getting ready to operate the car on raceday. “We are very proud of this important step in the development process of our new FIA WEC/IMSA contender for 2023,” said Thomas Laudenbach, head of Porsche Motorsport. “Thanks to everybody involved at Weissach and Team Penske.”
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