IMSA has outlined upgrades to the existing Prototype Challenge platform, to extend the class’ life through 2017 instead of 2016 as was originally planned.
Sportscar365 has learned the upgrades are very close to the proposed possibilities discussed last month following a PC owners’ team meeting.
Per a note outlined to stakeholders, upgrades include Katech lightening the engine by 25 to 30 pounds, ORECA making aero balance improvements to the chassis, and the electronics package and system being modified include traction control and other elements.
The goal is to have those upgrades in place by March’s Mobil 1 Twelve Hours of Sebring, following a series of tests to occur between now and then.
The reason for the extended time frame is to allow for three phases apiece of both engine and aero modification.
IMSA’s November test, Nov. 17-18 at Daytona International Speedway, will see several configurations of new dive planes and diffuser modifications be tested. Once confirmed, they’ll be approved for use starting at Sebring.
After the November test, IMSA and ORECA will work to confirm and formalize a Daytona-specific package for both the Roar Before the Rolex 24 and the Rolex 24 at Daytona.
Meanwhile on the engine side, both a larger damper and ported heads will be installed on selected engines for the November test, and once verified, will be implemented for the Rolex 24.
A lighter weight engine package, including a lighter crankshaft and rod assembly to go along with the dampers and heads, may be tested at a potential late-February test at Sebring, prior to any implementation before the 12-hour race.
Three RFPs have been received for the new electronics package, with IMSA and ORECA reviewing those this week. With the upgrades that need to be done, the new electronics wouldn’t be on board until that potential late-February Sebring test.
Cost-wise, following a PC team owners’ meeting at Road Atlanta, the engine upgrade cost cap is set for $10,000 per engine, the aero cost cap is set for $10,000 and the electronics/system change cost cap is set for $45,000.
Defending series champions CORE autosport are set to return for next season and Performance Tech Motorsports has also outlined its plans to return once it completes repairs of a new tub.
Meanwhile PR1/Mathiasen Motorsports has expressed interest in a P2 program, and other class teams are yet to formalize their 2016 plans.