Saturday, January 30, 2010

Hold Up, Multiple Engine Makers?

pdog here, and I just turned on to Sports Cars in the Dark and heard them talk about a Porsche being chased by "V-8 Chevy." WHAT? Multiple engine makers and car "sha-sees"?

Maybe I misjudged this whole sports car thing. Earlier I saw a FORD. OMG. Coming from IndyCar, where it's Honda/Dallara (goddamn it!), this is a bit of an eyebrow raiser.

In IndyCar if you see someone wearing a "Honda Racing" jacket you figure they just want to stay on the good side of the sugar daddy. In sports cars they .... wait a second ... may actually be passionate for a brand of engine.

GOOD GOD.

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9 comments:

Allen Wedge said...

but I've heard chassis/engine competition bankrupts manufacturers, and prices out teams... certainley they couldn't be doing that kind of thing in a very controlled environment like Grand-Am

Dinosaur Boy said...

That sounds crazy!

Declan said...

The engine spec is very tightly controlled and this isn't the same level of engine development you see in genuine prototype racing. These are effectively stock motors.

Steve Z. said...

I said three years ago they needed to use the same basic engine block formula as the G/A for the IndyCar Series. However in hindsight (or is it foresight?), I'm all for the 4-cyl turbo formula.

Tabernerus said...

Tight, exciting racing on a variety of road courses, featuring multiple engine manufacturers, multiple chassis manufacturers, each of which have enough differences to be easily differentiated by savvier fans, reasonable levels of cost containment, and solid safety history. Yeah, some people don't find the DP cars to be particularly elegant. Fine. But seriously, if you added 10 oval races to the 10 best races from the Grand-Am schedule, wouldn't that be just about the best damn racing series in America? I mean, I know I'D be watching.

Declan said...

Tabernus,

It's a glorified club series that has NO fanbase to speak of and it does push technology forward in any way.

IndyCar should be pushing the envelope not developing a spec engine with different badges on it. When CART was at its peak the cars mainly had Cosworth power and there was hardly any manufacturer involvement.

Declan said...

Actually,

Put it another way, do you think the multiple manufacturers in NASCAR is exciting? Because this is the sportscar equivalent. It is the Daytona Motorsports Group MO. It seems to work in Grand Am but clearly hasn't worked for them on two wheels. Check out the grid numbers and prize funds fr the AMA SportBike and AMA Super Bike Series.

Dex

Tabernerus said...

Declan, I agree that pushing the envelope is great. In sports car terms, let's call that the ALMS model. The problem is that ALMS is in real financial trouble, and there's a roughly 0% chance that IndyCar will go that route. If that's NEVER gonna happen, I'd be curious what other routes they could explore that offer some of the brand competition while not multiply costs for an extra 7/10's of a second per lap. One of those routes is something like the Grand-Am system. Look at it this way: Would you at least agree such a system would be better than 22 Dallara/Honda/Firestone entries?

Declan said...

Not if the Honda had 950bhp and more mechanical than aerodynamic grip.

And if you think the finances of Grand Am are teams any better than the ALMS teams then you are very much mistaken. Grand Am is propped up by DMG (Nascar) just as IndyCar was for many years under Tony George.

DMG wants to crush the ALMS just as TG wanted to crush CART/CCWS.

Dex