Lamborghini announced Tuesday (May 17) that they have begun development of a new prototype that will be built to the new LMDh ruleset. This car will debut in both the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship’s GTP class and the FIA World Endurance Championship’s Hypercar class in 2024.
“This step up into the highest echelon of sports car racing marks an important milestone for our company,” stated Stephan Winkelmann, Lamborghini’s chairman and CEO. “We will be measuring ourselves against the very best, on the most demanding proving grounds. On one hand, this will give our successful motorsports program even more visibility, but it will also allow us to test future technologies: our LMDh prototypes will become our most sophisticated open laboratory on four wheels.”
With Audi recently deciding to pause their LMDh development in favor of a potential entry into Formula 1, Lamborghini’s decision to enter the fray makes them the second manufacturer from The Volkswagen Group to confirm entry, joining Porsche. The Porsche LMDh entry is already testing on-track ahead of a race debut in January’s Rolex 24 at Daytona. Lamborghini marks the sixth manufacturer to join in on the LMDh formula along with Porsche, BMW, Cadillac, Acura and Alpine.
As Lamborghini is already an existing manufacturer in the GT classes in the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, they will have no issues gaining entrance to the championship. IMSA president John Doonan is very happy with the news.
“IMSA has enjoyed a longstanding partnership with Lamborghini dating back to the introduction of Lamborghini Super Trofeo North America a decade ago and continuing into a successful GTD program,” Doonan stated. “We are proud that Lamborghini is confirming plans to grow its IMSA footprint even further in 2024 into GTP and the top category of prototype sports car racing. Having another manufacturer of this caliber make the commitment to race in GTP reinforces the LMDh technical platform that we developed alongside our partners at the ACO, and we cannot wait to see these new Lamborghini prototypes debut in the 2024 IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship.”
The announcement was fairly light on details. For instance, Lamborghini did not indicate which one of the four LMP2 chassis manufacturers that they will base their car on, or what kind of engine will power it in addition to the spec hybrid device. The new car also does not have a name at the present time.
Lamborghini’s head of motorsport Giorgio Sanna told SportsCar365.com on Tuesday that he expects a similar setup to what Porsche currently has for the LMDh when the car first races in 2024. Porsche’s Penske partnership has the same team operating North American and European divisions for the two major series.
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Phil Allaway has three primary roles at Frontstretch. He's the manager of the site's FREE e-mail newsletter that publishes Monday-Friday and occasionally on weekends. He keeps TV broadcasters honest with weekly editions of Couch Potato Tuesday and serves as the site's Sports Car racing editor.
Outside of Frontstretch, Phil is the press officer for Lebanon Valley Speedway in West Lebanon, N.Y. He covers all the action on the high-banked dirt track from regular DIRTcar Modified racing to occasional visits from touring series such as the Super DIRTcar Series.