The new “GT 500” class, that is set to embrace the same regulations at the DTM from next year, was finally unveiled at the Suzuka circuit on August 16th, as Lexus, Nissan and Honda unveiled their interpretations for the 2014 season.
The benefits of the joint “Steering Committee,” which has been established between Super GT, DTM and GRAND-AM will help to provide a conclusive, cost-effective solution and level playing field for all the manufacturers that want to participate.
The Lexus LF-CC, Nissan GT-R and Honda “NSX-GT Concept” all share a similar engine concept, running an in-line 4 cylinder, 2-litre turbocharged unit that is based on the exclusive specification that is for Japan. This also maintains the mantra that the new regulations that all three motorsport associations will run with in the future, as the engines are to helping to promote the fact that all motorsports are seeing a trend in downsizing, fuel efficiency and lightweight construction, which shares a very clear parallel with the automotive industry’s progressive trends towards the future of road cars.
There are slight differences with these vehicles, even with the fact that the same technical specifications have been adhered to, such as the fuel filler opening and air conditioner, especially as they take in consideration the nature of racing over in Asia and Japan, where the cars will compete.
Also ensuring Japanese craftsmanship when it comes to precision in building these next-generation vehicles, Toray Carbon Magic Co. Ltd will be providing the universal one-piece carbon-fibre monocoque for the cars that will compete next year, which is another way of keeping generic costs down for all concerned.
GTA Chairman, Masaaki Bandoh, showed his appreciation towards how the three car manufacturers have embraced this new philosophy towards a globalized, reduced-cost racing platform that is kinder to our environment, as the cars, apart from the Lexus entry which suffered technical problems, went on their 1-hour public test later that day for all to see them in action.
As this opens the proverbial floodgates for potential mutual invitations, this means that the three Japanese manufacturers could help the grid to expand in the DTM, as well as Audi, Mercedes and BMW potentially fielding entries in the Super GT series. The future for this joint venture is closing in on reality closer than we know it, and all that remains is for GRAND-AM to show off their contribution when the time is right….