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Porsche 963 Revealed with Official Livery, Engine Spec

Porsche christens its LMDh car the ‘963’ and reveals more details about powertrain…

Image: Porsche

Porsche has revealed more details of its in-development LMDh car including the name, official livery and full specification of the twin-turbo V8 internal combustion engine.

The Porsche 963 will be raced by Porsche Penske Motorsport in the FIA World Endurance Championship Hypercar class and the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship GTP category next year, with the option for customer teams to purchase and run the car.

The 963’s name alludes to Porsche sports prototypes of the past, particularly the Porsche 962 which along with the 956 has served as inspiration for the new car’s design.

According to Porsche, the color scheme of red, white and black is a “salute” to the manufacturer’s previous racing models, while the company says the LMDh prototype’s DNA goes back to the Porsche RS Spyder LMP2 which Team Penske ran in the 2000s.

The Multimatic chassis on which the Porsche 963 has been developed will be eligible for the next generation of LMP2 regulations starting in 2025.

The Porsche 963’s internal combustion engine will be a 4.6-liter twin-turbo V8 unit derived from the engine found in the hybrid-powered Porsche 918 Spyder road car.

Like all LMDh cars, the Porsche powertrain will include a spec hybrid system consisting of a Bosch motor-generator unit, a Williams Advanced Engineering battery and a seven-speed Xtrac gearbox. The maximum output of the powertrain is 670 horsepower.

Porsche confirmed in January that its LMDh car would feature a twin-turbo V8 engine, however the displacement of the unit had been kept under wraps until now.

“After 7,889 test kilometers during the first half of 2022, we’re on a very good path but there is still work to be done before the start of next season,” said Porsche Motorsport Vice President Thomas Laudenbach.

“Our new Porsche 963 should continue the legacy of legendary models such as the 917, 935, 956, 962 and the 919 Hybrid.

“I’m positive that we’ll be well-positioned when it comes to technology and we’ve also created the relevant team structures to set us up for wins in the thrilling competition between many manufacturers and different concepts.”

Several partners have also been named for the Porsche 963 project including ExxonMobil (oil), Ansys (global technology partner), Penske Corporation (official partner), Multimatic (technology), TAG Heuer (timing), Hugo Boss (outfitter) and Puma (race clothing).

Porsche “Aiming” for Bahrain Dress Rehearsal

In addition to revealing more details about its LMDh car, Porsche has indicated that it is “aiming” to be ready for a test in race conditions at the 8 Hours of Bahrain in November.

This would be as an invitational entry ineligible to score WEC points, under an approval announced by the FIA in March.

Bahrain is the only WEC race this year at which Porsche could feasibly debut the 963, considering it has more track testing to carry out including performance testing.

A non-competitive race debut in the WEC this season would enable series organizers the ACO and FIA to gather valuable data for next year’s Balance of Performance process between the new LMDh cars and the LMHs that are already active.

The car is then due to be homologated in time for its official race debut in the Rolex 24 at Daytona in January, which kicks off the WeatherTech Championship season.

“Expectations are extremely high,” said Porsche Penske Motorsport managing director Jonathan Diuguid.

“Not only from the public but also from Porsche and Team Penske, who have written great motorsport chapters together in the past.”

Images: Porsche

Daniel Lloyd is a UK-based reporter for Sportscar365, covering the FIA World Endurance Championship, Fanatec GT World Challenge Europe powered by AWS and the IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar Championship, among other series.

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