Lamborghini Close In On 2024 WEC Commitment
The news broken by RACER yesterday that Lamborghini are set to be confirmed as the sixth LMDh manufacturer for the IMSA Weathertech Sportscar Championship from 2024 looks set to be matched by a similar commitment to the FIA WEC with Lamborghini joining the LMH factory efforts from Toyota, Peugeot, Ferrari and Glickenhaus and already confirmed commitments from Audi and Porsche with their new for 2023 LMDH cars.
Senior sources close to the programme have confirmed that the Italian supercar marque is set to join the World Endurance Championship, most likely from 2024, with a restyled and rebranded version of the Multimatic-developed LMDH platform that is set to form the basis of both the Porsche and Audi.
As with the other VAG brands the Lamborghini version of the Multimatic platform is set to use the same 4 litre twin turbo V8 engine, boosted by the LMDH spec hybrid drive. The engine though is a current Lamborghini production unit, standard equipment on the brand’s successful Urus SUV.
And as with the parallel IMSA programme Lamborghini is understood to be principally targeting their current GT3 customer base as prospective LMDH entrants in the WEC with several title winning squads understood to be under consideration.
A delegation from Lamborghini Squadra Corse headed by Head of Motorsport Giorgio Sanna was on site at the Monza FIA WEC meeting last month where it is understood that agreement in principle for the brand to join the World Championship was made.
The looming move to LMDH marks the end of a long search fro a global programme for the brand beyond their successful customer GT and one-make efforts that has taken in evaluation of a wide range of formulae including GTE, LMP/ Dpi and as a potential IndyCar engine supplier.
Cadillac Set To Spring WEC Surprise
In another RACER exclusive last week, Marshall Pruett revealed that an expansion next season to a two-car IMSA Dpi programme for Chip Ganassi Racing with Cadillac looks set to be a precursor for factory-backing for a 2023 Dallara-based LMDH programme for the premium GM brand.
The Cadillac LMDH programme has yet to be formally announced, that confirmation now expected during race week at the Le Mans 24 Hours, the timing and location though look to be far from a coincidence.
The Ganassi-run factory LMDH programme is set to feature two cars too as a cornerstone of the Cadillac LMDH programme, but the surprise package of the plan could well be that the team field a single factory car apiece in both IMSA and FIA WEC competition.
Despite the fact that Cadillac is a global brand, with other premium GM products including the Corvette C8 also coming on stream in markets in Europe and elsewhere too, the potential for a WEC-based Cadillac factory programme counts as a surprise, though the presence of the brand will do no harm to the continued ambitions of Corvette Racing to compete at Le Mans as long as their C8.R platform is eligible.
If confirmed it will see the Cadillac brand return to top class prototype racing outside North America for the first time since the DAMS-run programme in 2000 and the factory team’s appearances at Le Mans from 2000-02 (pictured above).