10-15-2011, 11:37 PM
Officially Welcomed to the 'Fest
Location: Nor Cal
Join Date: Jan 2005
Mein Auto: 330i
Jim Campbell, Chevrolet U.S. Vice President for Performance Vehicles and Motorsports, and GM Racing Director Mark Kent joined principals of the three aligned teams in providing an update about the engine program at Las Vegas Motor Speedway.
“It’s exciting because racing has been part of our heritage and history,” said Campbell, who was flanked by Team Penske, Andretti Autosport and Panther Racing representatives. “In our recent open-wheel racing history we have had a lot of success. We have looked at the engine rules laid out by INDYCAR and they align well with our production side, including biofuel and turbo-charged engines.
“What we learn on the engine development side in racing will help make our production engines better.”
Chevrolet and Honda on-track development/testing commenced last week at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course and will continue next week at Las Vegas Motor Speedway (Ryan Hunter-Reay, Chevy, and Scott Dixon, Honda, driving) and through mid-December when IZOD IndyCar Series teams receive their first new chassis from Dallara Automobili. Teams will begin testing after the first of the year, and the 2012 season opener is March 25 at St. Petersburg, Fla.
INDYCAR validation of the next-generation car was completed two weeks ago at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway.
The new engine will be a 2.2-liter, turbocharged, direct-injection V-6 fueled by E85. INDYCAR will be able to adjust the boost level to provide appropriate horsepower to the wide variety of racetracks on which the IZOD IndyCar Series races. Chevy’s engine is a twin-turbo supplied by BorgWarner.
“Chevrolet and its technical partners have met all of the development targets for the new powerplant,” Kent said. "In our last media briefing before the Indianapolis 500, I said that the new Chevy IndyCar V-6 would be up and running in June. I'm pleased to report that the engine fired up for the first time on June 16, and dyno testing began immediately.
“Since then we have focused on power development and durability testing to achieve the series' goal of 2,000 miles between rebuilds.”
GM Racing is using a cooperative team strategy to accelerate development of the engine.
"The test team is made up of individuals from each of our key partner teams, and we are operating as Team Chevy," Kent said.
It also is creating the infrastructure to support its IndyCar effort.
"Many of the components of the Chevy IndyCar V-6 require long lead times to manufacture, and these parts are now in production," Kent said. "Our technical partner, Ilmor Engineering in Plymouth, Mich., has plans in place to distribute and maintain Chevrolet engines for our IndyCar teams."
Power, who will contend for the IZOD IndyCar Series World Championship Trophy on Oct. 16 at Las Vegas Motor Speedway in the season finale, said the power behind the new chassis was impressive during the two-day Mid-Ohio session.
“It was awesome driving out of pit lane for the first time and feeling the turbo engine,” Power said. “The test went flawlessly, which shows you what kind of job Chevrolet and (partner) Ilmor Engineering have done. We will continually ramp it up and work on making the engine better.
“It will be a great year in 2012 having turbo engines back in the series.”