WEC plug-in hybrid rule no gimmick, say Porsche and Toyota

A proposed FIA World Endurance Championship rule requiring LMP1 hybrids to complete the first kilometre after every fuel stop on electric power is no gimmick, according to Toyota and Porsche.

WEC plug-in hybrid rule no gimmick, say Porsche and Toyota
#1 Porsche Team Porsche 919 Hybrid: Neel Jani, Andre Lotterer, Nick Tandy, #9 Toyota Gazoo Racing Toyota TS050 Hybrid: Stéphane Sarrazin, Yuji Kunimoto, Nicolas Lapierre
#2 Porsche LMP Team Porsche 919 Hybrid: Timo Bernhard, Earl Bamber, Brendon Hartley
Pascal Vasselon, Technical Director Toyota Racing
#2 Porsche Team Porsche 919 Hybrid: Timo Bernhard, Earl Bamber, Brendon Hartley
#9 Toyota Gazoo Racing Toyota TS050 Hybrid: Stéphane Sarrazin, Yuji Kunimoto, Nicolas Lapierre, #28 TDS Racing Oreca 07 Gibson: François Perrodo, Matthieu Vaxivière, Emmanuel Collard
#9 Toyota Gazoo Racing Toyota TS050 Hybrid: Jose Maria Lopez, Yuji Kunimoto, Nicolas Lapierre
#8 Toyota Gazoo Racing Toyota TS050 Hybrid: Anthony Davidson, Sébastien Buemi, Kazuki Nakajima
Checkered flag for #8 Toyota Gazoo Racing Toyota TS050 Hybrid: Anthony Davidson, Sébastien Buemi, Kazuki Nakajima

The two factories competing in the WEC's top division at present believe the rule scheduled to come into force in 2020, and unveiled at the Le Mans 24 Hours, fits with developments in the automotive industry.

Toyota Motorsport GmbH technical director Pascal Vasselon told Motorsport.com he believed the technology was "very relevant".

He added: "This will be very similar to the plug-in hybrid technology in road cars where you use electric mode in the city and then go onto the internal combustion engine when you move onto the highway."

Porsche LMP1 team principal Andreas Seidl described the rule demanding zero-emissions running as "a natural move for the championship".

Vasselon stressed the importance of the WEC maintaining its road relevance in the face of a major cost-cutting drive for 2020 when a new rulebook will come into force.

He said that it was important that LMP1 didn't become a "super-DPi", a reference to the LMP2-based class for manufacturers competing in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship's top class.

"Manufacturers such as Toyota have come into the WEC because it is an opportunity to showcase high-level technology that is relevant to road car development," he said.

"Everyone wants to save costs, but not at the expense at emptying the technological tank. We don't want a super-DPi, because then we would stop."

The so-called "one-kilometre rule" will go hand in hand with plug-in rapid charging for the P1 hybrids at pitstops. There will also be a requirement for them to finish all WEC races in electrical mode.

The FIA and WEC promoter the Automobile Club de l'Ouest intend to limit development costs by introducing a common charging system to be used by all manufacturers.

Also included in the 2020 rules outlined at Le Mans were the introduction of moveable aerodynamics and strict limits on development.

shares
comments
Vilander gets Bird's Ferrari seat for Nurburgring

Previous article

Vilander gets Bird's Ferrari seat for Nurburgring

Next article

Hanley lands G-Drive WEC seat for Nurburgring

Hanley lands G-Drive WEC seat for Nurburgring
Load comments
The 10 greatest drives of lost legend Jo Siffert Prime

The 10 greatest drives of lost legend Jo Siffert

It's 50 years since Jo Siffert was killed in his prime at Brands Hatch. The Swiss scored just two world championship wins in a Formula 1 career spent largely with privateer teams, but showed on numerous occasions in single-seaters and in sportscars with Porsche that he could beat any of the best drivers of his era given the right equipment.

Inside the Le Mans finish too barmy for Hollywood Prime

Inside the Le Mans finish too barmy for Hollywood

Team WRT has been at the forefront of GT racing for years and made a successful move to prototypes for 2021, capped by an LMP2 win on its Le Mans debut. It could've been even better had the race been one lap shorter, when its cars ran 1-2, but the stranger-than-fiction reality has spurred the team to reach greater heights.

Le Mans
Oct 16, 2021
Why Toyota's Le Mans victory was not as simple as it looked Prime

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
What we've learned from the Le Mans 24 Hours so far Prime

What we've learned from the Le Mans 24 Hours so far

The new dawn for the FIA World Endurance Championship has arrived at Le Mans, as Hypercars prepare to duel for victory in the world's oldest endurance race. Motorsport.com picks out the 10 things we have learned in the build up to the race.

Le Mans
Aug 21, 2021
Le Mans 2021: The team-by-team guide Prime

Le Mans 2021: The team-by-team guide

After a two-month delay due to the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the 2021 Le Mans 24 Hours is set to get underway with the start of the Hypercar era at the Circuit de la Sarthe.

Le Mans
Aug 21, 2021
Can Toyota's #7 crew break its Le Mans curse? Prime

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 Prime

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

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 was considered the heavy favourite 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 15, 2021