LMP2 set to become coupe-only class from 2017

The LMP2 category looks certain to become a coupe-only category when new regulations come into force in 2017

LMP2 set to become coupe-only class from 2017

Le Mans 24 Hours organiser the Automobile Club de l'Ouest, which jointly writes the P2 rulebook with the FIA, has stated that the first proposal for the new rules will mandate closed-top body shapes.

ACO sporting manager Vincent Beaumesnil told AUTOSPORT: "The new LMP2 in 2017 will be for closed-top cars, definitely.

"The main principle of what we will submit to the World Motor Sport Council is that the current LMP1 monocoque rules will be the basis for P2 in the future."

The ACO's confirmation of the plan to phase out open-top cars follows the moves of the leading constructors in the class.

OAK Racing sister company Onroak Automotive gave its new Ligier JSP2 coupe a race debut in last month's Le Mans 24 Hours, while the new Strakka Dome S103 is due to start racing when the World Endurance Championship resumes in September for its final five races.

Honda Performance Development, ORECA and Zytek have all announced plans for coupes that will come on stream over the next two years, while the Russian SMP Racing squad is also designing a car for next season.

Beaumesnil stressed that the existing open-top P2s would be given a grace period to continue competing in the WEC, the European and Asian Le Mans Series and the United SportsCar Championship after the introduction of the new regulations.

"As always we plan to do that: we will grandfather the existing cars for a minimum of one year," he continued.

The ACO and the FIA are setting up a working group that will involve constructors from Europe, Japan and the US to define the new rules.

Beaumesnil said that the plan for the USC, which will allow Daytona Prototypes to race against P2 machinery in its top class up to the end of 2016, was to give manufacturers the chance to produce their own bodywork for LMP2 chassis.

"Clearly we have different targets for LMP2: for us it is a privateer category, but over in the USA it is a bit different," he explained.

"They will use the same car, but we have agreed the principle of using different bodywork: if Chevrolet wants a car that looks like a Corvette it can do that.

"But if a car comes to race at Le Mans, for example, it will have to be fitted with WEC bodywork."

shares
comments
Ram Racing Ferrari withdraws from World Endurance Championship

Previous article

Ram Racing Ferrari withdraws from World Endurance Championship

Next article

Audi set to stick with single hybrid system for 2015 WEC

Audi set to stick with single hybrid system for 2015 WEC
Load comments
The standout memories of Le Mans 2021 Plus

The standout memories of Le Mans 2021

OPINION: With four of the five Hypercar entries unproven in a 24-hour race, it would not have been unexpected for at least one of them to suffer serious reliability trouble. That they all managed to make it through the race relatively unscathed, says GARY WATKINS, was something of a surprise.

Le Mans
Aug 24, 2021
Why Toyota's Le Mans victory was not as simple as it looked Plus

Why Toyota's Le Mans victory was not as simple as it looked

Toyota scored its fourth Le Mans 24 Hours victory and a 1-2, with the #7 car of Kamui Kobayashi, Mike Conway and Jose Maria Lopez beating the #8. But although it looked straightforward from the outside, Toyota faced serious problem that had to be solved with some quick-thinking and ingenuity

Le Mans
Aug 24, 2021
How overlooked Mazda produced one of Le Mans' greatest shocks Plus

How overlooked Mazda produced one of Le Mans' greatest shocks

The screaming rotary-engined Mazda 787 is regarded as one of the most popular Le Mans 24 Hours-winning cars, but until its surprise success on this day 30 years ago it was never regarded as a likely victor. But that reckoned without a new technical partner, some canny political manoeuvring and a rival's bizarre self-inflicted weakness

WEC
Aug 22, 2021
Can Toyota's #7 crew break its Le Mans curse? Plus

Can Toyota's #7 crew break its Le Mans curse?

One Toyota, normally with the number 7 on the side, always seems to attract the bad luck in the Le Mans 24 Hours. Mike Conway, Kamui Kobayashi and Jose Maria Lopez are hoping for a change in fortune this time around, but face significantly more unknowns than in recent years

Le Mans
Aug 19, 2021
Why Glickenhaus should be taken seriously on its Le Mans bow Plus

Why Glickenhaus should be taken seriously on its Le Mans bow

Many were quick to dismiss Glickenhaus when the boutique American sportscar firm's entry into the top class of the Le Mans 24 Hours was announced. It's all-new LMH racer, powered by an engine built by a rally specialist, goes in as the underdog against Toyota but the mathematical odds suggest that it has more than just a faint hope of success

Le Mans
Aug 18, 2021
The Asian underdog taking on the mighty GT factories at Le Mans Plus

The Asian underdog taking on the mighty GT factories at Le Mans

The rising HubAuto team steps up to GTE Pro at Le Mans this year for an ambitious bid to take on the three works giants – and has every reason to be optimistic of achieving its goal in becoming the first privateer on the podium since 2016

Le Mans
Aug 18, 2021
How 1971's benchmark Le Mans team lost with the best car Plus

How 1971's benchmark Le Mans team lost with the best car

The JW Automotive Engineering team won twice at the Le Mans 24 Hours with ageing Fords and were considered heavy favourites to add more victories to its tally after partnering with Porsche. But despite being armed with the all-conquering 917, this formidable combination was never as successful in real life as on the big screen

Le Mans
Aug 14, 2021
Why Argentina’s current great isn’t motivated by emulating Fangio Plus

Why Argentina’s current great isn’t motivated by emulating Fangio

Having twice missed out on Formula 1 and reinvented himself as a touring car driver, Jose Maria Lopez has had a rocky ride to becoming a four-time world champion. One more would put him level with his nation's favourite son, but there's another prize he would value far more than the honour of matching Juan Manuel Fangio's tally

WEC
Aug 14, 2021