At a meeting earlier this week, the FIA finally confirmed new regulations set to replace the current LPM1 category in the World Endurance Championship.
Ever since the departure of Audi at the end of 2016, and Porsche at the end of 2017, there has been a void at the highest level of endurance car racing. For the 2018 season, Toyota remain as the only top level LMP1 race car.
The FIA’s release, following a meeting in the Philippines is quite vague but the intention is clear. It confirms that it aims to reduce manufacturer budgets to one quarter of the current levels in LMP1. It then goes on to state that there will be “freedom of design based on a hypercar concept”.
More details are expected to follow at a press conference next Friday, in advance of the 24 Hours of Le Mans last weekend. The rules will give manufacturers the flexibility to develop prototype machinery with the look of a road going supercar or hypercar.
The sport needs to attract more competition at the highest level. It was thought that the FIA might move towards the introduction of a Daytona Prototype (DPi) racing class as this has proved popular in the US. The FIA have instead opened the door to a new prototype class which could conceivably see cars like the Aston Martin Valkyrie, or the McLaren Senna competing in Le Mans.