Cadillac has taken the wraps off its DPi contender, the DPi-V.R, which will debut in January’s IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship season-opening Rolex 24 at Daytona.
The long-awaited official confirmation of the program came on Wednesday, months after the car first took to the track in private testing.
It marks the manufacturer’s return to prototype racing since 2002, when it last fielded LMP900 cars in the American Le Mans Series.
“Cadillac is proud to return to the pinnacle of prototype racing in North America after a 14-year absence,” said Johan de Nysschen, president of Cadillac.
“Cadillac’s V-Performance production models — the ATS-V and CTS-V — are transforming our brand’s product substance, earning a place among the world’s elite high performance marques.
“The Cadillac DPi-V.R further strengthens our V-Performance portfolio, placing Cadillac into the highest series of sports car racing in North America.”
The Dallara-chassied Cadillac was the first 2017-spec LMP2 style car to run in September and has since completed additional tests at NCM Motorsports Park, Watkins Glen, as well as a 24-hour endurance test at Charlotte Motor Speedway.
Wayne Taylor Racing has undertaken the majority of the early development, with team veterans Ricky and Jordan Taylor and Max Angelelli, who will again spearhead WTR’s lineup next year.
Two-time and defending Prototype champions Action Express will also make the switch from fielding Corvette DPs with its two-car team, with an unchanged driver lineup.
Dane Cameron, Eric Curran, Joao Barbosa and Christian Fittipaldi all return to the AXR squad.
The DPi-V.R has been designed with elements taken from several Cadillac V-Performance road cars, above all the CTS-V.
It features V-Performance wheels with Brembo brakes, and multiple V-Performance-inspired vents, air intakes and emblems throughout.
“The DPi-V.R race car was an exciting new canvas for the Cadillac design and sculpting team,” said Andrew Smith, Global Cadillac Design executive director.
“The studio embraced the opportunity to interpret the Cadillac form language, line work and graphic signature for this premier prototype racing application.
“Every detail of the final design was selected to support the car’s on-track performance and unmistakable Cadillac presence.”
It will be powered by a naturally-aspirated 6.2-liter V8 engine producing 600 horsepower, based on the engines found in the Cadillac CTS-V and Escalade. The rear-wheel-drive layout features a X-TRAC paddle-shift transmission.
John Dagys contributed to this report