The end of 2020 came with good news for fans of endurance racing. Porsche announced that they’d be returning to Le Mans starting in 2023. They’ll join in the North American IMSA SportsCar Championship and the FIA World Endurance Championship with a new LMDh prototype that lets them participate in the top class. Porsche will compete with manufacturers such as Alpine, Toyota, Audi, and Glickenhaus.
Porsche has always had success in endurance racing. The brand won 19 times at Le Mans, 18 times at Sebring, and 18 times at Daytona. Those triumphs made it all the more disappointing when Porsche was forced to back out of the 2017 FIA World Endurance Championship for financial reasons. Thankfully, updated hybrid powertrain regulations have made it financially possible for Porsche to return.
The new regulations make endurance racing more accessible for every competitor. Each participating car will have a standardized hybrid system, with a powertrain that delivers around 680 horsepower. Their combustion engines and design are up to the manufacturers within certain regulations. Now, Porsche and other participating manufacturers will be allowed to use the same model to compete at both Daytona and Le Mans. This saves each brand massive amounts of time and money, as they will not need to create two entirely unique prototypes.
This is an exciting development for all Porsche fans. The technologies developed for motorsports tend to make their way to production cars eventually, and at Gossett Porsche, we are very much looking forward to that future.