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IndyCar's current Honda Indy V8 engine.
IZOD IndyCar Series Announces 2012 Engine Platform
Fans and industry representatives have asked for increased manufacturer participation in the sport, and the IZOD IndyCar Series is providing such a platform with its new engine strategy.
The IZOD IndyCar Series
has announced that its new generation of engines will
be more powerful and efficient than the current formula. The new engine
strategy is based on a recommendation from the ICONIC (Innovative,
Open-Wheel, New, Industry-Relevant, Cost-Effective) Advisory Committee.
The exciting new platform, which debuts in 2012, will allow
manufacturers to produce engines with a maximum of six cylinders as
well as maximum displacement of 2.4 cubic liters. The ethanol-fueled
engines will produce between 550 and 700 horsepower to suit the diverse
set of tracks on which the IZOD IndyCar Series competes and will be
turbocharged to allow for flexibility in power.
"The ICONIC Advisory Committee has researched future engine
platforms with manufacturers, teams, drivers and fans, and they felt
this strategy best highlights key attributes of the sport - speed,
competition and diversity," said Randy Bernard, chief executive officer
of the Indy Racing League. "We feel this open and all-inclusive
platform will make our sport an attractive option to engine
manufacturers, while allowing development of a relevant and innovative
platform to the current and future automotive industry by highlighting
efficiency, performance, durability, quality, environmental
responsibility and safety."
The IZOD IndyCar Series will explore new and relevant technologies
to incorporate into the engine such as energy recovery, hybrids, fuel
conservation and other developing green initiatives.
"Everyone wants to see competition and high performance on the
track," said Bernard. "We are the fastest and most versatile racing in
the world and this new engine strategy will continue to enhance that.
Now that we have a platform in place, it is our job to put this package
in front of the automotive industry to attract the type of
participation that will elevate the sport. We truly want to challenge
manufacturers to once again make our sport a proving ground and a
platform to showcase technology that will benefit the future of their
The new engine strategy will require that the IZOD IndyCar Series to
adopt rules that can accommodate various engine architectures.
"We will continue to evaluate rules that will keep a level playing
field across the board with the various engines that could enter our
sport," said Brian Barnhart, president of competition and racing
operations. "For example, we could see a V-6 competing against an
Inline 4 at all IZOD IndyCar Series events in the future. We will
require reference engines as a benchmark in performance while looking
at sonic air restrictors, fuel flow restrictions and more as key
criteria for competition."
The IZOD IndyCar Series formed the ICONIC Advisory Committee is
tasked with reviewing, researching and making a recommendation to the
league on the next generation IZOD IndyCar Series engine and chassis.
The league plans to have a decision on its chassis by June 30.
"Speaking on behalf of the ICONIC Advisory Committee members, it has
been an honor to contribute to the development of the new generation of
IndyCar," said Gil de Ferran, team owner representative to the ICONIC
Advisory Committee. "We feel this new engine strategy is open,
inclusive, powerful and high performance, in keeping with the
historical values associated with Indy car racing. Additionally it
poses relevant challenges to which the automotive industry faces today".
Committee members include de Ferran, Barnhart, Tony Cotman, Eddie
Gossage, Rick Long, Tony Purnell and Neil Ressler. It is mediated by
retired Air Force Gen. William R. Looney III.