WEC News: Peugeot's '22 WEC return on track despite car decision delay

Peugeot's return to sportscar racing in the 2022 World Endurance Championship remains on target despite delaying its decision on whether to develop an LM Hypercar or a LMDh contender

WEC News: Peugeot's '22 WEC return on track despite car decision delay

The French manufacturer insisted that its "goal is still to be there in 2022" in a brief statement made in the wake of this week's announcement of further details of the LMDh regulations by the WEC promoter the Automobile Club de l'Ouest and IMSA in North America.

But it stated that a decision on which type of car to build, originally due at the end of March, had yet to be made.

Jean-Marc Finot, motorsport boss of marque parent company PSA, explained that the "endurance project has been moving ahead in the right direction" despite the world health crisis.

"The whole staff has stood together and remained motivated, and research and development has been continuing at home thanks to means provided by the PSA Group," he said.

He added that the impact of home working by the development team on the project was still being analysed.

Peugeot has yet to reveal whether it will join the series from the beginning of the 2022 season, following the WEC's abandonment of the winter-series format last month.

Last year's announcement of its return to the pinnacle of sportscar racing for the first time since 2011 stated that it would be back on the grid in 2022.

It intended to be ready for the start of the 2022/23 campaign, but wasn't ruling out racing what was originally planned to be a LMH prototype over the second half of the 2021/22 campaign, the Le Mans 24 Hours included.

Finot expressed satisfaction with the initial draft of the LMDh rules, which will allow manufacturers to race the same machinery in the WEC and the IMSA SportsCar Championship.

"It was essential to have joint rules on parameters such as weight, power and aerodynamic, and this has been achieved," he said.

"We followed with great interest the evolution of LMDh regulations and convergence between its rules and those for LMH.

"We are satisfied with this ACO/IMSA/WEC announcement and especially with the confirmation of technical issues linked to the Balance of Performance, which will ensure a sporting equity between both categories."

Finot had been lobbying for what he called "perfect equity" between the LMH and LMDh classes.

Thursday's LMDh announcement stated that the cars would have a minimum weight of 1030kg and a combined power output from the internal combustion engine and the spec rear-axle hybrid system of 500kW (670bhp).

That compares with the 1100kg and 550kW (735bhp) announced for LMH machinery last June.

Finot hinted that the decision on which class of car to build, which had been due in March, is imminent.

"The last economic metrics should be soon available, so we will able to make a 100 percent comprehensive review," he said.

"Peugeot will reveal, in due time, the category in which the brand will come back in endurance in 2022."

Finot's comments on the importance of cost reduction could indicate that Peugeot is leaning towards the cheaper LMDh category and developing a car out of an LMP2 chassis built by one of the four licensed constructors.

"Motorsports after the crisis will have to show a bigger social and environmental responsibility and its costs will have to be significantly lower," he said.

"Priority should be given to attractiveness and entertainment rather than unreasonable technological developments we have been facing."

Peugeot has already agreed to work with the Ligier marque, which had its P2 license extended in January, on the aerodynamics of its 2022 WEC contender.

Watch hundreds of hours of WEC and classic Sportscar action on Motorsport.tv. Subscribe for just £3.99 per month

shares
comments
WEC News: Porsche scales back GTE Pro entry for Le Mans 24 Hours
Previous article

WEC News: Porsche scales back GTE Pro entry for Le Mans 24 Hours

Next article

WEC News: LM Hypercar rules brought in line with new LMDh class

WEC News: LM Hypercar rules brought in line with new LMDh class
The long road to convergence for sportscar racing's new golden age Plus

The long road to convergence for sportscar racing's new golden age

The organisers of the World Endurance Championship and IMSA SportsCar Championship worked together to devise the popular new LMDh rule set. But to turn it from an idea into reality, some serious compromises were involved - both from the prospective LMDh entrants and those with existing Le Mans Hypercar projects...

IMSA
Nov 25, 2022
How Porsche's Le Mans legend changed the game Plus

How Porsche's Le Mans legend changed the game

The 956 set the bar at the dawn of Group C 40 years ago, and that mark only rose higher through the 1980s, both in the world championship and in the US. It and its successor, the longer-wheelbase 962, were voted as Autosport's greatest sportscar in 2020 - here's why

WEC
Aug 25, 2022
Why BMW shouldn't be overlooked on its return to prototypes Plus

Why BMW shouldn't be overlooked on its return to prototypes

OPINION: While the focus has been on the exciting prospect of Ferrari vs Porsche at the Le Mans 24 Hours next year, BMW’s factory return to endurance racing should not be ignored. It won't be at the French classic next year as it focuses efforts on the IMSA SportsCar Championship, but could be a dark horse in 2024 when it returns to La Sarthe with the crack WRT squad

Le Mans
Aug 21, 2022
The problem sausage kerbs continue to cause Plus

The problem sausage kerbs continue to cause

Track limits are the problem that motorsport doesn't seem to be able to rid itself of. But the use of so-called 'sausage kerbs' as a deterrent has in several instances only served to worsen the problem, and a growing number of voices want to see action taken

Formula 1
Jul 18, 2022
The history lessons Peugeot should have learned on its return Plus

The history lessons Peugeot should have learned on its return

The Peugeot 9X8 will make its World Endurance Championship debut at Monza this weekend. The French manufacturer has gone radical and will be hoping it doesn’t need to overhaul its contender, as it did with its first Le Mans challenger…

WEC
Jul 8, 2022
Why Peugeot's sportscar return will capture the imagination Plus

Why Peugeot's sportscar return will capture the imagination

OPINION: Peugeot will make its World Endurance Championship debut at Monza this weekend with the 9X8 Le Mans Hypercar that has ignored design conventions by eschewing a rear wing. Its distinctive look will help sportscar racing appeal to fresh audiences as a new golden era is ushered in

WEC
Jul 7, 2022
How Formula E's double-duty drivers influenced their Le Mans teams' fortunes Plus

How Formula E's double-duty drivers influenced their Le Mans teams' fortunes

Eight Formula E drivers made the 7,000-mile sprint from the streets of Jakarta to the fabled Circuit de la Sarthe and every one had a story to share at this year's Le Mans 24 Hours. Despite a range of triumphs and disappointments, each driver doubling up on the day job played a key role in their teams' fortunes

Le Mans
Jun 14, 2022
How an Italian junior formula giant is readying for its Le Mans future Plus

How an Italian junior formula giant is readying for its Le Mans future

Prema remains a colossus in single-seaters, but the serial Formula 2 and Formula 3 title-winning squad has joined forces with top GT squad Iron Lynx for an attack on sportscars in the World Endurance Championship and European Le Mans Series. Ahead of its debut at the Le Mans 24 Hours, its sights are firmly fixed on LMP2 glory – and a future in Hypercars next year...

Le Mans
Jun 8, 2022